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Obama: For Ben Bradlee, journalism 'a public good vital to our democracy'

The White House released this statement from President Obama, on the death of former Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee:

For Benjamin Bradlee, journalism was more than a profession — it was a public good vital to our democracy. A true newspaperman, he transformed The Washington Post into one of the country's finest newspapers, and with him at the helm, a growing army of reporters published the Pentagon Papers, exposed Watergate, and told stories that needed to be told — stories that helped us understand our world and one another a little bit better. The standard he set — a standard for honest, objective, meticulous reporting — encouraged so many others to enter the profession. And that standard is why, last year, I was proud to honor Ben with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Today, we offer our thoughts and prayers to Ben's family, and all who were fortunate to share in what truly was a good life. [President Obama]

Bradlee passed away on Tuesday from natural causes, at age 93.