To applause, Pulitizer prize winning journalist Bob Woodward took the stage at Lawrence’s Dole Institute of Politics Sunday afternoon, for the 2011 Dole Lecture. The lecture is an annual event to commemorate Bob Dole’s recovery after he was wounded in World War II.
This year’s lecturer has set the standards for reporters everywhere, when he introduced the world to the Watergate scandal, which eventually led to President Richard Nixon’s resignation. During his interview-style presentation, he talking about covering the story. “We have an obligation to get to the bottom of this; that’s what we do in this business,” Woodward said.
Those in attendance at the lecture, included U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran, Kansas. “I’m a product of Watergate in a sense, in that I was a summer intern in Washington, DC in 1974, when Watergate was the story,” he said. “He’s a fascinating figure in my life, so I’m just delighted to be here with other Kansans to hear what he has to say.”
Woodward spoke extensively about the Watergate investigation, but he also addressed modern political issues. He described how his sources say they carefully considered the operation to kill Osama bin Laden. “he said, ‘well, it’s a 40 percent chance it’s bin laden,’ and somebody said, ‘that’s not very good’…but he said, ‘it’s 38 percent better than anything we ever had before,’” Woodward said.
Rep. Paul Davis, Lawrence, was also at the lecture. He said he admires Woodward. “He’s an inspiration to all journalists in doing what journalism is all about, and that’s seeking the truth,” he said.