CEI President Fred L Smith, Jr. made the folllowing statement on the passing of legendary political columnist Robert Novak today, at age 79. (See theblog post onOpenMarket.org.)
I am deeply saddened at the news today of the death of Bob Novak. Like so many others, I held him in high regard as a principled and first-rate journalist. I am also honored to have called him a good friend and a great ally.
His honesty and devotion to investigative journalism did much to bring balance to the increasingly ideological world of journalism. Though he was unabashedly conservative, his reporting was more than the offering of opinion. He paid attention to the interplay between policy and politics, reporting on how mandates handed down from Washington impacted the rest of America. To name but one example, he was one of the first political columnists to report on how the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley financial accounting law had a direct and negative impact on American economic growth and competitiveness.
Yet, for all his tenacious and dogged style, Novak was also possessed of a wit and humor that softened his basic Calvinist view of mankind. Sadly, the political world will see far less light now that the Prince of Darkness has passed.
See also: Statement by CEI scholar Myron Ebell