David Broder, R.I.P.

The death of an elderly news reporter or political pundit is not something that normally draws much attention outside the journalism world. But David Broder’s death Tuesday, at the age of 81, is one that should be mourned by all who respect this nation’s political system.

Broder worked 45 years for The Washington Post and was considered the dean of the Washington press corps. But he also made a point of getting out of Washington and away from candidates and political insiders each election cycle to get a feel for what average American voters were thinking.

As recently as 2008, at the age of 78, he was out knocking on doors to talk to voters, Post Associate Editor Robert Kaiser wrote Tuesday. His last column appeared in the Post on Feb. 6 and was syndicated in many newspapers nationwide.

What’s more, in an age when most columnists writing about politics and presidential candidates have become vehemently partisan, Broder maintained a solidly centrist position, reporting on good and bad qualities of all candidates, regardless of political affiliations, and honestly assessing their chances.

His no-nonsense style of political reporting and opinion writing will be sorely missed.


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