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Pulitzer Prize Winning Conservative Journalist found Dead

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Joseph Rago, 34, was a famed editorial writer for The Wall Street Journal.  He was found dead in his New York apartment Thursday night after failing to come to work that day.  NYPD were alerted by staff and found him dead with no visible signs of trauma.  A cause of death has yet to be reported.

Mr. Rago made his biggest mark writing about health care. In 2011, he was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for what the Pulitzer organization called his “well crafted, against-the-grain editorials challenging the health care reform advocated by President Obama.”  His latest article just this Wednesday was again on health care, The ObamaCare Republicans.

“No matter where you fall in the debate of health care reform, the arguments advanced by Joseph Rago in his series of editorials in The Wall Street Journal were impossible to ignore,” the Pulitzer judges wrote. “Not paying attention to these editorials was not an option for policymakers.”

Mr. Rago gained credibility with the policy community and with politicians because he did his homework, becoming one of the most well-sourced people around on health care, with sources throughout Washington and among academics on the left and right, Mr. Gigot said in an interview on Friday.

According to The Wall Street Journal:

“Journalism is a hard field to get into, and I caught a break and try to help other people,” he said. 

In an interview, Peter Robinson, a former speechwriter to President Ronald Reagan and a fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, said that attitude was typical of Mr. Rago, a longtime friend and 2010 media fellow at Hoover.

“Joe was an intellectual fighter but there was also just a wonderful sweetness about him,” he said.

He praised Mr. Rago’s rigorous approach to opinion writing, saying Mr. Rago always presented the information readers needed to have to assess his conclusions.

“That’s very rare,” Mr. Robinson said. “Joe was never just mouthing off. He was doing the hard work of real journalism.”

A sad loss.

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