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Adam Clymer, Political Reporter, Editor and Pollster, Dies at 81

Category: Political News,Politics

And in 2000, returning to the campaign trail, he was thrust into the headlines himself while covering a Labor Day rally for the Republican presidential ticket in Naperville, Ill.

Spotting Mr. Clymer, Mr. Bush pointed him out to his running mate, Dick Cheney, and unwittingly said into a live microphone, “There’s Adam Clymer, major-league asshole from The New York Times.”

To which Mr. Cheney replied, “Oh yeah, he is, big time.”

The Times did not publish the vulgarity, but it was widely reported. Mr. Bush never apologized. His campaign spokesman said Mr. Bush had been upset by “very unfair” coverage by Mr. Clymer.

Hardly embarrassed, Mr. Clymer was gleeful that he had stirred things up. Interviewed afterward on CNN, he said that some of his articles had offended Democratic politicians, too.

“You know,” he said, “if they all love you, you might as well just be driving a Good Humor truck.”

Adam Clymer was born in New York City on April 27, 1937, the son of Kinsey and Eleanor (Lowenton) Clymer. His mother wrote children’s books, including “The Trolley Car Family” and “The Tiny Little House.” His father, a former reporter for The Baltimore Evening Sun and The Brooklyn Eagle, worked for the New York City welfare department.

Mr. Clymer attended the private, progressive Walden School in Manhattan and Harvard, where he was the president of The Crimson, the student newspaper. As a student he covered college games as a part-time correspondent for The Times before graduating magna cum laude in 1958.

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