(CNN) - Barack Obama and John McCain both expressed sadness Friday over the death of NBC journalist Tim Russert.
Speaking to reporters in Washington, McCain called Russert a man of "honesty and integrity."
WATCH: McCain comment on Russert
“He was hard but he was always fair. We miss him," McCain said. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family. And we know that Tim Russert leaves a legacy of the highest level of integrity, of the highest level of journalism, and we miss him and we'll miss him a lot. Again he was hard, he was fair, he was at the top of his profession. He loved his country. He loved the Buffalo Bills and most of all he loved his family.”
In Columbus, Ohio, Obama said Russert was "one of the finest men I knew."
WATCH: Obama comment on Russert
"I’ve known Tim Russert since I first spoke at the convention in 2004. He's somebody who overtime I came to consider not only a journalist but a friend," Obama said. "There wasn’t a better interviewer in TV, not a more thoughtful analyst of our politics, and he was also one of the finest men I knew. Somebody who cared about America, cared about the issues, cared about family.
"I am grief stricken with the loss and my thoughts and prayers go out to his family. And I hope that even though Tim is irreplaceable that the standard that he set in his professional life and his family life are standards that we all carry with us in our own lives," he also said.
More: Newsman Tim Russert dies at 58
My deepest sympaties to Tim's wife and remaining family...our nation has suffered a great...someone whom I admired so much...so sad.
My condolsnces...TO HIS FAMILY AND CNN.
Wow, this is heartbreaking. Russert was way better than Blitzer!
Finally, we have something both candidates can agree on ... Tim Russert was the quintessential TV journalist ... always prepared ... and always a true gentleman with a heart! He cannot be replaced, but all journalists would do well to emulate him!
I love you Tim. My prayers are with you and your family
this is a bummer.i really liked this guy.our family is praying for yours,tim.
TIM RUSSERT IS A PEER THAT ALL NEWSCASTERS AND COMMENTATORS SHOULD REACH FOR THE STARS TO BECOME. He was an honest, fair, and the most truthful commentator to ever to air the airways. I watched him every Sunday morning and did so look forward to his discussion groups and interviews. The world is a much more weaker place without his presence. MAY THE LORD BE WITH HIS FAMILY, CLOSE FRIENDS AND HELP THEM TO UNDERSTAND HE IS IN A MUCH, MUCH BETTER PLACE. Although these words will not bring much solace to them I felt they had to be said by a person that only knew of him by his works. Heaven is a much better place today.
I liked Tim. He leaves a big void at NBC. No other journalist there will be able to fill his shoes, so please for once do the honorable thing, don't even try.
Tim will be missed.
I would like to leave my condolences here for his wife, son and father.
I DON'T THINK BILL AND HILLARY WILL BE MISS HIM THAT MUCH.
We love you, Tim. We will miss you. May God give you perfect peace and place!
I will miss Tim Russert. He was a very credible newsman.
Life is short. You never know when life on earth could end. My Prayers go out to Mr. Russert's family! God Bless!!!!!!
Mr. Russert was the first to say that Obama would be the nominee. He was right. Everyone always respected what he said. He was the best in the business.
so very sad.
I'm cryin' and I'm in pain. He died slathered in fat and doin' what he enjoyed doin', and everbody should respeck the Timmer for what he done.
Tim Russert was a truly great journalist. I will miss him a lot. Let's show the man respect. I am pro Obama and African-American, but let's please refrain from making comments about McCain or Obama out of respect. Let's just pay homage to a great journalilst. I'm just sorry that he did not live to see the end of this election. R.I.P., Mr. Russert.
I was shocked to hear of this. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family. This man was a fine journalist in every respect. Treated every person with the same amount respect regardless if he agreed with their beliefs or not. This election will surely not be the the same without him May he Rest in Peace and sleep with the angels.
I was shocked when I heard the news. I have become a fan of Meet The Press over the years. Tim was an excellent journalist he will be missed. My prayers go out to his family and many friends.
marcy you are one sick woman to politicize someones death , tim was a true and fair newsman keep your political ideals to your self and pull your head out of your butt
Tim Russert will truly be missed. His was an honest voice in Washington. He always presented both sides to an issue and never stated or shared his own personal views or agenda. We have truly lost a special friend.
This is very sad news. He was a terrific guy. I will certainly miss him with his marker doing the math on election day. My thoughts and prayers are with the family.
I remember him said to Keith just 2 weeks ago after Obama secure the nomination saying "we are going to meet in Denver" i.e for the democratic convention. God, this is sad. This is unbelievable, I was looking forward to see him at the convention. My condolence to his family, MSNBC, NBC and to BIG RUSS
Alot of the people that post on here , the most fear they probably ever felt was when Paris Hilton had her show taken off the air.
Americans have no sense of direction on the important.
I am very disappointed and grieved about Russert. Although I would be what some considered a liberal, I still think that Russert was the BEST interviewer on television. God bless him and his family.
CNN My comment was removed as usual. The above caption is in regard to comments made by Senators McCain and Obama.
Please allow me to speak in regard to your caption.
First allow me to say that our thoughts and prayers are with the Russert family at this time.
In regards to the statements made by both Senators:
Sen McCain was sincere and heartfelt in his condolences. It appeared that Sen Obama looked downward when he spoke.