Friday, June 13, 2008

Tim Russert Dead at 58


NBC News and MSNBC
updated 3 minutes ago

WASHINGTON - Tim Russert, NBC News’ Washington bureau chief and the moderator of “Meet the Press,” died Friday after being stricken at the bureau, NBC News said Friday. He was 58.

Russert was recording voiceovers for Sunday’s “Meet the Press” broadcast when he collapsed. He was rushed to Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, where resuscitation efforts were unsuccessful, said Russert’s physician, Michael Newman.

Newman said the cause of death was not immediately known.

Russert had returned from Italy, where his family was celebrating the graduation of his son, Luke, from Boston College.

A grilling on “Meet the Press” was often considered an essential proving ground in the career of any national politician. Russert took the helm of the 60-year-old public affairs program in 1991.

“If you could pass the Tim Russert test, you could do something in this field,” said Howard Fineman, senior Washington correspondent for Newsweek magazine and a columnist for

Russert’s tenacity as a reporter and his consuming passion for politics were evident during his nearly round-the-clock appearances on NBC and MSNBC on election nights.

Statement from NBC
Statement from Jeff Zucker, president and CEO of NBC Universal:

“We are heartbroken at the sudden passing of Tim Russert. We have lost a beloved member of our NBC Universal family and the news world has lost one of its finest. The enormity of this loss cannot be overstated. More than a journalist, Tim was a remarkable family man. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Maureen, their son, Luke, and Tim’s entire extended family.”

Aside from his on-air responsibilities, Russert was a senior vice president and head of NBC’s overall Washington operations.

He was “one of the premier political journalists and analysts of his time,” Tom Brokaw, the former longtime anchor of “NBC Nightly News,” said in announcing Russert’s death. “This news division will not be the same without his strong, clear voice.”


Brian said...

I never liked the program and the way that it followed Republican Party talking points.
For so long Meet The Press was a mouthpiece and facilitator for the Bush Administration.

I didn't think he was fair with Obama either (although Obama has to say nice things now). These corporate news programs never dug into the lives of McCain or Hillary Clinton with a fine-toothed comb. And from now until November, I won't hold my breath waiting for them to look at McCain with the same scrutiny as they have done for others.

But we got a healthy dose of Obama controversy....both real and manufactured.

"Journalist"? - No. Talking Head, Pundit, Host, Commentator, Government mouthpiece? - Yes.

Ed Bradley, Amy Goodman, & Bill Moyers, were/are examples of journalists. He's also no Koppel, Cronkite, Rather or Jennings for that matter.

He'll be missed by those who loved/knew him personally i'm sure.

Truthiz said...

It's ashame because, to hear his own doctor tell it_ from a physiological perspective, the man's health was a ticking timebomb!

I don't get it?!

He had the best health insurance and could afford the best health care that $$$ could buy_and yet, despite the fact that HE KNEW that he had some Serious health problems, he completely FAILED to take better care of himself!

Regarding his "journalistic" bona fides:

I give Russert and his show, Meet The Press, mixed reviews.

I believe the reason so many "journalist" are singing his praises now that he's gone is because "Journalism" has become such a "low-IQ" and "low-class" profession that Russert was head and shoulders above the majority of what passes for a "journalist" these days!

However I agree with the AI...

Russert was NO "Ed Bradley, Amy Goodman, or Bill Moyers". Nor was he a "Koppel, Cronkite, Rather or Jennings for that matter."

Still, all-in-all, it sounds like he was a very decent and kind man, as well as a "good friend" to many_and Yes, no doubt he will be missed by many people.