Joseph Rago, Wall Street Journal Editorial Writer, Dies at 34

Rago won a Pulitzer for his coverage challenging Obama’s health-care reform in 2011

Joseph Rago, the Wall Street Journal editorial writer who won a Pulitzer Prize for challenging President Obama’s health-care reform efforts, was found dead at his Manhattan apartment on Thursday, the Journal reports. He was 34.

According to the WSJ, Rago was found by police at 7:40 p.m. While emergency responders found no obvious sign of trauma, the medical examiner was still working to determine the cause of Rago’s death Friday.

“It is with a heavy heart that we confirm the death of Joseph Rago, a splendid journalist and beloved friend,” Paul Gigot, the editor of the Journal’s editorial page, said in a statement. “Joe and his family are in our thoughts and prayers, and we will be celebrating his work in Saturday’s paper.”

Rago won the Pulitzer Prize for editorial writing in 2011. His work was categorized by the Pulitzer organization as “well crafted, against-the-grain editorials challenging the health care reform advocated by President Obama,” while the judges noted, “No matter where you fall in the debate of health care reform, the arguments advanced by Joseph Rago in his series of editorials in The Wall Street Journal were impossible to ignore.”

Rago began his career at the Journal in 2005 as a summer intern.

In addition to his coverage of the health-care issue, Rago also wrote about energy regulation and the balance between privacy and national security. He also served as the Journal’s main editorial writer during last year’s presidential campaign.