"He has totally overcome the deficiency of legal training," Kristol quips. "I don't think anyone knows he is a lawyer."
For Fischer, one of the show's producers, it is Russert's active involvement in all phases of the show--from choosing the guests to planning the computer graphics to basic research--that gives Russert his interviewing edge.
"He knows what people are going to say through his research, and he has the ability to look at all sides of an issue," Fischer says.
Russert described his daily regimen in George.
"As soon as Sunday's over, I'm thinking about next week," Russert said. "I read seven newspapers a day, books, magazines, because I want the very best guest on the most important topic."
And other journalists notice his diligence, Kristol says.
"People respect him because he is smart, and he works hard," he says. "He prepares more than others."
The Highlight Reel