Sunday, June 15, 2008

"Our Issues This Sunday...,"

(Note: This post will be all my thoughts and echoes of the panel as they come during the first hour of Meet the Press, after the death of Tim Russert at the age of 58.)

Meet the Press has just begun, and the moderator's chair sits empty. Tom Brokaw, who had the sad duty to make the on-air announcement of Tim's death, is moderating what can only be a discussion of how much of an impact Tim Russert had on the political discourse of the day.

The first set of clips was a grilling of various politicians, left, right, and center. McCain had it best when he said it was the most fun he had since his last interrogation.

I'm having to stop typing and watching due to the kids. On Father's Day even, it's a necessity. As a father and a son, Tim would understand.

The fun thing was listening to Tim try to find out who's running for President. Among those who said no, Hillary and Huckabee.

One thing that I get from all the guests is that you could go in, spend an hour getting hard questions thrown at you, and then, when it was over, he held no anger, and he was a person. It wasn't an attack, it was a discussion. With hard questions and quotes from wherever they could be.

Listening to the primary candidates that Tim grilled, it was pleasure watching them squirm. From candidates past to our current slate, it was fun to have the question you want answered thrown at them, then listen to them try to answer or spin. You knew more by the time the discussion was over.

A son of Buffalo, he always managed a "Go Bills" at the end of the show.

A word they mention: Ambition. Tim had it. He wanted to be the best at what he did. He was the best at what he did. And he left us at the pinnacle. Consider how this race (McCain vs Obama) will be without both candidates getting grilled on Sunday mornings.

Scary moment: Doris Kearns Goodwin popping out of a cake and singing Marilyn Monroe style to Tim. But the smile on his face made it worth it.

More on ambition: Not only was he ambitious for his own career, but he wanted everybody to be better. Better politicians, better leaders, better people. And from world leaders to small children, he could do it.

As the Springsteen song "Thunder Road" plays in honor of Tim, I'll end this with the quote from Brokaw that sums up what we all feel:

"God bless our friend, son and father."


Dave Miller said...

It was a good show. I too posted on Russert, who will surely be missed.

shaw kenawe said...

And when his son, Luke, graduated from Boston College, he came to my neighborhood with his family and had a celebratory dinner.

He was a good guy.