(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
Amazing that people can still trivialize a great man's untimely death with political bickering. I guess it would be hypocritical for me to mention its almost all coming from the McCain camp?
i am so shocked and sad to hear this. my sundays will forever more be missing a dear friend.
He was a real pro and he'll be missed. They will have a hard time filling his shoe's .He was the only newsman I trusted. Tim was his own man.
I'll miss him. My condolences to his family .
I'm am dearly sorry to lose Tim. We need more professional journalists like him.
Speaking of journalists, the one who quoted Barack Obama should take a moment and learn the difference between "over time" and "overtime".
How dare you say such bad things about Tim. We know about the floods and stuff, it's just that right now Tims family needs us.
Our words will go to him and make heaven a better place.
God Bless the USA USA USA USA USA
Mr. Russert's untimely death should be respected. So please don't use this time for your political opinion, show some respect.
I am still shocked, he was a great journalist
All my simpathy goes to his family
May his soul rest in peace
Mr Russert wIll be missed ....... My Prayers and Thoughts are with his family.......May your memories bring you COMFORT
Russert was one of the few journalists worth respecting. The media will be worse off without him.
May his family and friends get through this alright.
I never watched Meet the Press because I could not stand Tim Russert.. He was a screamer and arrogant. I did not wish him dead, I just didn't like his style. Write Hillary Clinton on your ballot in November.
I loved this man!!! Yes, he will be missed. He has left a great void in the life of politics as I am certain his family life as well. Condolences...
Wonderful journalist – you'll be missed, Tim.
Tim is , was the man.
Wow! This is definitely a huge shock! He was a superb journalist.
This is the first election that I'm involved in my life and he is one of a very , very few that I watched. I was really looking forward to his commentary in the GE. He will certainly be missed. A remarkable life cut off too soon! Sad day....
A Great Journalist, A Greater Man.
Marie, perhaps Obama was sad.
Tim Russert really had no peer; he was unique in his skills, his honesty, and his character. He truly will be missed.
peakarach, have you no decency?
Tim Russert, you will be missed. you were an excellent newsman and moderator. you always had your facts straight and backed them up when needed. thank you for all you have done and other media and reporters should take a page from your playbook.
marcy stay away from mccain, he is an american hero but he also voted with the bush 89% of the time. besides he is just another republican and we all know what they have brought this country. HEARTACHE...NOTHING BUT HEARTACHE!!
I will miss him. My condolences to his family. Sundays will not be the same. This was one great man and he certainly knew how to give a tough interview. No one can take his place. Rest in peace, Mr. Russert.
Tim Russert will definitely be missed, one of the great political journalist of our time, Tim was the good part of journalism that we rarely see in news media. A legend in the field of political journalism. He will be missed. Peace and Prayers to the Family.
A tragedy. My thoughts and prayers to his family. Media has lost a real champion, and an amazing, respected talent.
This is truly a sad day in political journalism. Tim Russert was the most fair, unbiased, political genius of our time. There will be a big hole in political journalism. He was the one you could count on to speak about politics and not personal rhetoric, propaganda and hate! He was what the entire FOX NEWS team claimed to be...FAIR AND BALANCED! He made political commentary and political reporting make sense.
Wow, this is truly a sad day for me! My heartfelt sympathy to his family, friends and colleagues!