DemDaily: The Lawmakers We Have Lost

January 10, 2022

On Saturday, President Biden, former President Obama, colleagues and friends of former Nevada Senator Harry Reid paid their respects to the late Majority Leader, who passed away December 28th from pancreatic cancer.

The highly respected lawmaker, who retired from the Upper Chamber in 2017, will be remembered as one of history's most powerful Democrats, having led the US Senate as Majority Leader from 2007 to 2015.

Reid, an attorney, was elected to the Nevada Assembly in 1968 at age 28, served as Lieutenant Governor of Nevada from 1971 to 1975, and represented Nevada's 1st district in Congress from 1983 to 1987. He was elected to the US Senate in 1986.

He is credited with pushing through major legislation under the Obama administration, including the Affordable Care Act, the Dodd-Frank Act, and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. A plain-spoken man of famously humble roots, he will be remembered as a tenacious, magnanimous and modest leader.

"Few people have done more for this state and this country than this driven, brilliant, sometimes irascible, deeply good man from Searchlight, Nevada." - former President Barack Obama, 1/8/21

Lawmakers We Lost In 2021

US Senate
Bill Brock (R-TN), 90, served 1971-1977, and US House 1963-1971
Max Cleland (D-GA), 79, served 1997-2003
Bob Dole (R-KS), 98, served 1969-1996, and US House 1961-1969
Michael Enzi (R-WY), 77, served 1997-2021
David Henry Gambrell (D-GA), 91, served 1971-1972
Mike Gravel (D-AK), 91, served 1969-1981
Johnny Isakson (R-GA), 76, served 2005-2019, and US House 1999-2005
Carl Levin (D-MI), 87, served 1979-2015
Walter Mondale (D-MN), 93, served 1964-1976, and as US Vice President 1977 to 1981
Harry Reid (D-NV), 82, served 1987-2013 and US House 1993-1987
Adlai Stevenson (D-IL), 90, served 1970-1981
John Warner (R-VA), 94, served 1979-2009

US House
Todd Akin (R-MO), 74, 2001-2013
Edward Beard (D-RI), 80, served 1975-1981
James Bilbray (D-NV), 83, served 1987-1995
Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY), 84, served 1983-2007
Sonny Callahan (R-AL), 88, served 1985-2003
William Clinger (R-PA), 92, served 1979-1997
John Conlan (R-AZ), 90, served 1973-1977
Elizabeth Furse, (D-OR), 84, served 1993 to 1999
Alcee Hastings (D-FLA), 85, served 1993 to 2021
Harry Johnston (D-FLA), 89, served 1989-1997
Dale Kildee (D-MI), 92, served 1977-2013
Steven Kuykendall (R-CA), 73, served 1999-2001
Robert Lagomarsino (R-CA), 94, served 1974-1993
Jerry Lewis (R-CA), 86, served 1979-2013
Carrie Meek (D-FLA), 95, served 1993-2003
Paul Mitchell (R/I-MI), 64, served 2017-2021
Donald Rumsfeld (R-IL), 88, 1963-1969
Bobby Schilling (R-IL), 57, served 2011-2013
Neal Smith (R-IA), 101, served 1959-1995
Lester Wolff (D-NY), 102, served 1965-1981
Ron Wright (R-TX), 67, served 2019-2021
Bill Zeliff (R-NH), 85, served 1991-1997

Special Tribute: Many of us have that early campaign, that special candidate who inspired you and set the bar for those to follow, often changing the direction of our lives. Mine was Congressman Harry Johnston, whom we lost last year.

A true statesman in every sense of the word, Harry served as President of the Florida Senate before being elected to Congress in 1988, serving in the US House from 1989 to 1997.

A pragmatic progressive, he advocated for national healthcare, the environment, labor and equal rights, and most passionately for international diplomacy as chair of the Foreign Affairs African Subcommittee.

Harry helped negotiate a cease-fire between feuding Sudanese rebel leaders and, after the massacres in Rwanda, passed legislation to help the Organization of African Unity intervene more quickly in future conflicts. In 1999, President Clinton appointed him Special Envoy to Sudan.

Harry Johnston was universally respected by his colleagues and all who were privileged to work for him throughout his distinguished career. He will be remembered for his tireless dedication to the constituents of his beloved Palm Beach and to his family, for his wit and compassion, and for a life of public service led in honor. May we hope for more like him.

"We, as members of Congress, have a duty to educate, to enlighten, and to push for a society that does not punish people because they are different. We are here to lead our constituents, not leave them behind."- Congressman Harry Johnston, July 11, 1996 floor speech

Edwin Edwards (D-LA), 93, served four terms 1972–1976, 1976-1980, 1984–1988, and 1992–1996. Also US House 1965-1972
Frank Farrar (R-SD), 92, served 1969-1971
Lynwood Holton (R-VA), 98, served 1970-1974
Dick Lamm (D-CO), 85, served 1975-1987
Ruth Ann Minor (D-DE), 86, served 2001-2009
Buddy Roemer (D/R-LA), 77, served 1988-1992, and US House 1981-1988
Carlos Romero-Barceló (D-PR), 88, served 1977-1985, and US House 1993-2001

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Sources: US Congress, USAFMC, Wiki

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