Robert Draper

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For other people named Robert Draper, see Robert Draper (disambiguation).
Robert Draper
Robert draper 2007.jpg
Robert Draper in 2007
Born (1959-11-15) November 15, 1959 (age 54)
Nationality American
Alma mater University of Texas at Austin
Genres Non-fiction
Notable work(s) Dead Certain: The Presidency of George W. Bush;
Do Not Ask What Good We Do: Inside the U.S. House of Representatives

Robert Draper (born November 15, 1959)[1] is a freelance writer, a correspondent for GQ and a contributor to The New York Times Magazine. Previously, he worked for Texas Monthly, where he first became acquainted with the Bush political family.

Background and education[edit]

Robert Draper attended Westchester High School in Houston, Texas. He is the grandson of Leon Jaworski, prosecutor during the Watergate scandal, segregation trials, and Nazi war crimes, which is said to have influenced Draper's writing about the use and abuse of power. Draper was active in high school debate. He attended the University of Texas at Austin, writing for the university newspaper The Daily Texan.


After graduation from Texas at Austin, Draper wrote for the Austin Chronicle.


In 1991, Draper joined the staff of the Texas Monthly[2] He later became a contributing writer to National Geographic, GQ and The New York Times Magazine. Draper wrote an article on the Kushite pharaohs of Egypt for the February 2008 issue of National Geographic, as well as an article on the influence of art in the Congo for the September 2013 issue.


Draper is the author of Dead Certain: The Presidency of George W. Bush, a chronicle of the Bush administration from 2001 to 2007. He has also written Rolling Stone Magazine: The Uncensored History, and a novel, Hadrian's Walls, published in 1995. Draper was featured as a guest on The Daily Show on September 12, 2007, to discuss his book, Dead Certain.

In April, 2012 Draper published Do Not Ask What Good We Do: Inside the U.S. House of Representatives, which the Huffington Post described as "much-discussed and heavily-reported."[3] Writing in the Wall Street Journal, ABC News senior political correspondent Jonathan Karl called the book "vivid...a correspondent for GQ and a contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine, Mr. Draper embedded himself in the House in 2011, getting to know the key players—newcomers and old-timers alike. In his group portrait, he doesn't make any sweeping judgments about who is to blame for the failure of this Congress to address the country's long-term problems. But his refreshingly balanced account captures the drama of one of Congress's most combative and maddeningly frustrating years in memory.[4]}}


Draper lives in Washington, D.C. As a result of a toast at his second wedding, he has long been rumored to be 'brash'. Evan Smith, one of his editors at Texas Monthly, once toasted Draper: "Robert is a wonderful writer and a great person and an incredibly smart guy: Just ask him."[5][6]



  1. ^ "Robert Draper - Watch Robert Draper Videos and Clips | VideoSurf Video Search". Retrieved 26 April 2012. 
  2. ^ Clay Smith, "Writer-at-Large," The Austin Chronicle, May 14, 1999.
  3. ^ Huffington Post, {{quote|Robert Draper Book: GOP's Anti-Obama Campaign Started Night Of Inauguration," April 25, 2012.
  4. ^ Jonathan Karl, "Book Review: Do Not Ask What Good We Do—Partisan, and Proud of It," April 24, 2012.
  5. ^ Clay Smith, "Writer-at-Large," The Austin Chronicle, May 14, 1999. ("Evan Smith, deputy editor at Texas Monthly, recalling an engagement party he and his wife gave for Draper and his fiancee (now wife) Meg Littleton: 'I toasted Robert and I said, "You know, Robert is a wonderful writer and a great person and an incredibly smart guy: Just ask him." And I meant that as a little dig at Robert, who's never had a shortage of self-confidence.'")
  6. ^ Eddie Scarry, "Kathleen Parker Fetes 'Brash' Author in Georgetown Home, Hems and Haws about Eliot Spitzer," "Mediabistro", May 2, 2012. ("In his Wikipedia entry Draper is described as being “known for his brash and self-confident personality.” He was self-confident but didn’t come off as brash. He told us that part of the entry came from a former editor who made a toast at Draper’s wedding rehearsal, saying “Robert’s a great writer and if you don’t believe me, ask him.” Draper said Wikipedia “seized upon” the quote and “deduced from that that I’m brash or have a healthy estimation of my abilities or something.”")

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