Paul Conrad, the longtime political cartoonist for the Los Angeles Times who left the paper in 1993 but continued to contribute material for 15 years, died over the weekend at his Rancho Palos Verdes Home. He was 86. During his career he won three Pulitzer Prizes, two during his tenure at the L.A. paper, and skewered 11 presidents.
LA Observed reported that he had been ill “for months;” the exact cause of his Saturday death was not known. Conrad gained notoriety as one of the sharpest critics of the presidents from California — Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan — and he even ended up on Nixon's famed “enemies list.”
As a thorn in Reagan's side Conrad was the subject of morning phone calls from that president to Times publisher Otis Chandler, according to The Washington Post.
Conrad depicted the 40th president as “Reagan Hood,” a leader he said stole from the poor and gave to the rich.
In 1968 then-Los Angeles Mayor Sam Yorty even sued the Times over a Conrad cartoon he said libeled him. He lost.