Saturday, June 14, 2008

Tim Russert (Meet the Press) Gone!

There has been a ton of noteworthy passings this year already.  Tim Russert, the long-time host of NBC's Meet The Press, was added to that long list yesterday.  He was recording voice-overs for this weekend's show when he died of a sudden heart attack.  He left us yesterday at the young age of 58.  There was not many of his ilk still around in the press.  He was hard but fair.  Although he leaned to the left he did not allow his own political views blind his ability to ask tough questions of anyone who sat at the other end of the table.  I don't think we will see another personality in the press like him again.  Tim was one of a kind.  

It seems almost ironic that Tim would die in an election year of such magnitude.  

Maybe it was the length of this current cycle that got him.  Tim has already been at the center of the political struggle for a year now and he had a huge role to play in the story of Mike Huckabee's candidacy.  Governor Huckabee appeared on Meet The Press on December 30th, 2007.  This was the Sunday before the Iowa Caucuses.  Mike sitting at the other end of Tim Russert's table was seen as a huge risk.  Some pundits even thought that Huckabee would lose just because he would appear on the show and make a gaffe with so few days left before Iowans went to Caucus.  Below I share with you (in three parts) Mike Huckabee's interview on Meet The Press from December 30th, 2007.  But first, Mike's comments on Russert's passing:  

I join with other Americans in expressing both shock and grief with the news of Tim Russert’s untimely death. He was a significant figure in American politics, deeply respected, but also deeply feared by those who sat across his table on Meet The Press. He was fair, but always relentless in his pursuit of truth and honesty from those who dared to lead the nation. His has been a commanding voice in public affairs and in many ways the E.F. Hutton of political talk. Our prayers go out to his family and we will all mourn the loss of his voice.

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