Monday, August 8, 2011

Mark O. Hatfield, 1922-2011

My favorite politician died yesterday (and I don't even self-identify as Republican). Mark Hatfield was not perfect, but he was a man of uncommon principle, decency and common sense. He stood up for those who could not defend themselves, from minority citizens in his home state of Oregon in the 1950s to those afflicted by war and poverty while in the Senate. He was not afraid to stand alone, but he also had the political savvy to know when to stand and when to compromise. He represented so much that I would love to see return to American politics. We are poorer for his loss, but I hope the news of his death and the recollections of his life in politics spur others to notice his legacy--and honor it with their actions.

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