Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Sad News

Reading my WaPo today --- yes, I'm one of those anachronisms who still subscribes to and reads daily papers --- I came across an article on the late Richard Ben Cramer, who died on Monday at age 62.  As the article details, Cramer was, in many ways, a throwback to the caffeine-addicted, chain-smoking --- lung cancer ultimately claimed him --- reporters of yore.

Cramer, who won the Pulitzer Prize in 1979 (at age 29) is best known for his 1992 work “What It Takes: The Way To the White House,” a huge tome on the 1988 presidential race.  Presidential historian Douglas Brinkley calls it "“arguably the finest book on campaign politics of all time."

I had the privilege of dining with Mr. Cramer and his assistant at a Federalist Society National Lawyers Convention some years ago, and while I can't say I knew the man or got to know him well on that brief encounter, he struck me as a very nice guy, a hail-fellow-well-met sort of man whose friendliness and good humor doubtless served him well in his chosen profession.  It was easy to understand how he got to know his subjects so well.


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