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OBITUARIES | Passings | Neil MacNeil

Time magazine correspondent

June 16, 2008|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Neil MacNeil, 85, a congressional correspondent for Time magazine for nearly 30 years and an early presence on public affairs television shows, died of lung cancer June 7 at his home in Bethesda, Md.

After an early career as a Washington reporter for the United Press wire service, MacNeil joined Time in 1958 and became its chief congressional correspondent. He stayed there until retiring in 1987.

In 1964, his public affairs show "Neil MacNeil Reports From Congress" began airing on WETA, a public television station in Washington, D.C. Three years later, he became a founding panelist on "Washington Week in Review," now called "Washington Week," and remained affiliated with the public broadcasting program for 11 years.

His books included "Forge of Democracy" (1963), a widely praised history of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Born in the Bronx, N.Y., MacNeil was a 1948 graduate of Harvard University and did graduate work at Columbia University in American history and the study of historical knowledge. In 1980, he was the first recipient of the Everett McKinley Dirksen Award for Distinguished Reporting of Congress.

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