If you will, a personal word today about the death of David Broder.
David was not just the Dean of the Washington Press Corps, he was, right up until his death on Wednesday at the age of 81, the best and hardest-working reporter in Washington.
I had known David for many years. Met him first when he was covering Jerry Brown’s presidential campaign. Saw him often, later, in Sacramento. And I was honored – and nervous! – years ago, when he showed up to cover a news conference I held in Washington as Democratic State Chair of California.
As a reporter, and later as a columnist for The Washington Post, Broder didn’t just sit in Washington and read wire reports. He spent weeks on the road every year: conducting interviews, visiting campaign headquarters, testing the public mood, and always digging, digging, digging for new leads and insights.
He was as comfortable in Des Moines, or Austin, or Seattle, or Manchester as he was in Washington. He had the biggest rolodex, and talked to more people, than anybody else in politics. That kept his reporting fresh and unique. And, most of all, he was an absolute, old-fashioned gentleman.
David Broder was our leader. And we are all proud to have been part of his team.
That’s my parting shot for today.