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Kate O’Beirne, RIP

The Capital Research Center mourns the loss of our longtime National Advisory Board member, Kate O’Beirne, a sterling journalist and grand warrior for the West. Kate’s easy charm and razor wit won over even her sparring partners, and one reason she accomplished much was because she cared little for public acclaim.

She was an original drain-the-swamp girl when serving with Sen. James Buckley and President Ronald Reagan. John J. Miller recalls how she explained her Reagan administration days: “‘When you worked for Reagan, you just knew what to do,’ she said. ‘Nobody had to tell you what to do. You didn’t wait for orders. You got up in the morning, went to your job, and did what you knew Reagan wanted done because you were a conservative.’”

“She had a deep hinterland of legal, historical, political, and religious knowledge,” adds John O’Sullivan. “Kate had that X-factor ability to make a complicated truth understandable and a stern test appealing. I think that’s God-given. And Kate didn’t let that gift go to waste.”

Hers was a steadfast faith in the best tradition of Irish Catholic wit and pugnacity. Leaving her final National Catholic Prayer Breakfast, Ramesh Ponnuru recalls, she noted the paltry tip a favorite priest left the bellman. “Father,” she chided, “you took a vow of poverty, not him.”

“She was a career woman and a devoted mom,” writes Jonah Goldberg, “a fierce ideological warrior and loving wife, a sincere and passionate Catholic who could laugh at – or tell – a ribald joke over drinks at the bar.”

Scott Walter, president of Capital Research Center, observes that “Kate had a depth of knowledge and strength of conviction that are all too rare in the nation’s capital, among pundits or pols. She will be dearly missed.”