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Robert Byrd

United States Senator from West Virginia

Robert Carlyle Byrd (November 20, 1917 – June 28, 2010) was a Senator of the state of West Virginia from 1959 until his death in 2010. He is the longest serving Senator in United States History.[1] He was dean of the United States Senate from 2003 to 2010. He was President pro tempore four times. He was elected to the Senate in 1958. He served as majority leader from 1977 to 1981 and again from 1987 to 1989. He was also minority leader from 1981 to 1987.

Robert Byrd
Robert Byrd official portrait.jpg
86th President pro tempore of the United States Senate
In office
January 3, 2007 – June 28, 2010
PresidentDick Cheney
Joe Biden
Preceded byTed Stevens
Succeeded byDaniel Inouye
In office
June 6, 2001 – January 3, 2003
PresidentDick Cheney
Preceded byStrom Thurmond
Succeeded byTed Stevens
In office
January 3, 2001 – January 20, 2001
PresidentAl Gore
Preceded byStrom Thurmond
Succeeded byStrom Thurmond
In office
January 3, 1989 – January 3, 1995
PresidentGeorge H.W. Bush
Dan Quayle
Al Gore
Preceded byJohn C. Stennis
Succeeded byStrom Thurmond
2nd President pro tempore emeritus of the United States Senate
In office
January 3, 2003 – January 3, 2007
PresidentDick Cheney
Preceded byStrom Thurmond
Succeeded byTed Stevens
Senate Majority Leader
In office
January 3, 1987 – January 3, 1989
DeputyAlan Cranston
Preceded byBob Dole
Succeeded byGeorge Mitchell
In office
January 3, 1977 – January 3, 1981
DeputyAlan Cranston
Preceded byMike Mansfield
Succeeded byHoward Baker
Senate Minority Leader
In office
January 3, 1981 – January 3, 1987
DeputyAlan Cranston
Preceded byHoward Baker
Succeeded byBob Dole
Senate Majority Whip
In office
January 3, 1971 – January 3, 1977
LeaderMike Mansfield
Preceded byTed Kennedy
Succeeded byAlan Cranston
United States Senator
from West Virginia
In office
January 3, 1959 – June 28, 2010
Preceded byChapman Revercomb
Succeeded byCarte Goodwin
Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee
In office
January 3, 2007 – January 3, 2009
Preceded byThad Cochran
Succeeded byDaniel Inouye
In office
June 6, 2001 – January 3, 2003
Preceded byTed Stevens
Succeeded byTed Stevens
In office
January 3, 1989 – January 3, 1995
Preceded byJohn C. Stennis
Succeeded byMark Hatfield
Secretary of Senate Democratic Conference
In office
January 3, 1967 – January 3, 1971
LeaderMike Mansfield
Preceded byGeorge Smathers
Succeeded byTed Moss
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from West Virginia's 6th district
In office
January 3, 1953 – January 3, 1959
Preceded byErland Hedrick
Succeeded byJohn Slack
Member of the West Virginia Senate
from the 9th district
In office
December 1, 1950 – December 23, 1952
Preceded byEugene Scott
Succeeded byJack Nuckols
Personal details
Born
Cornelius Calvin Sale Jr.

(1917-11-20)November 20, 1917
North Wilkesboro, North Carolina, US
DiedJune 28, 2010(2010-06-28) (aged 92)
Merrifield, Virginia, US
Resting placeColumbia Gardens Cemetery
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)
Erma James
(m. 1936; died 2006)
Children2
EducationBeckley College
Concord University
University of Charleston
Marshall University (BA)
George Washington University
American University (JD)
Signature

Contents

Early lifeEdit

Byrd was born on November 20, 1917 in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina.[2] He was married to Erma James from 1937 until her death in 2006. They had two children.

Political careerEdit

Byrd was fourth person in the state (as President pro tempore of the Senate, usually longest serving Senator from majority party) from January 1989 to January 1995, from January 3, 2001 to January 20, 2001 and again from June 2001 to January 2003 and January 2007 until his death in 2010.

After Republicans retook control of the Senate, he became the honorary President "pro tempore emeritus" In 2007, Byrd became President Pro Tempore of the Senate again. Before he was elected to the Senate he served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1953 until 1959 (he is dean of all Congress).

He was a vocal opponent of President George W. Bush's war in Iraq. In January 2006 he was one of the only four (alongside Ben Nelson of Nebraska, Kent Conrad of North Dakota and Ken Salazar of Colorado) democratic Senators, who voted for Samuel Alito.

DeathEdit

Byrd died on June 28, 2010 in Falls Church, Virginia, aged 92[3] from natural causes.

ReferencesEdit

  1. Byrd Truly the Elder Statesman
  2. "BYRD, Robert Carlyle, (1917–2010)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved January 22, 2009.
  3. Holley, Joe. "The Washington Post - Sen. Robert Byrd dead at 92; West Virginia lawmaker was the longest serving member of Congress in history". The Washington Post. The Washington Post. Retrieved September 1, 2012.