Harry Reid, "the most powerful Senate Majority Leader in history," is dead
Harry Reid has died, according to famed Nevada journalist Jon Ralston. He was 82.
Harry Reid will go down in history as one of the most influential members of the US Senate.
He was never supposed to be that though. He came from Nevada state politics and was famously satirized in Martin Scorsese’sCasino. He was not supposed to be the Democratic leader in 2006. Tom Daschle was not supposed to lose in 2004.
He was personally pro-life at a time when the party was increasingly pro-choice.
When Democrats swept the 2006 midterms, his elevation to Majority Leader was not nearly as expected as Nancy Pelosi’s was to Speaker. It wasn’t until late into the night that Conrad Burns conceded and Democrats won that final seat.
Harry Reid was complicated. A Mormon of great faith, he got his start as an amateur boxer and took that fighting instinct with him when he became a politician. He ended up being instrumental in the passage of more liberal bills than any Senator since at least Mike Mansfield, who moved Lyndon Johnson’s agenda through the Senate.
And of course Johnson himself was someone Reid was regularly compared too. In 2014, on the eve of him losing his majority, The Hill called him the “most powerful Senate leader in history.
American journalist Robert Caro famously dubbed Lyndon Baines Johnson the “master of the Senate,” but experts say Reid now wields more power than Johnson ever did.
Reid’s tight leadership reins have protected vulnerable Democrats from having to take tough votes and helped them amass a 55-seat majority. He routinely puts legislation on the floor as a take-it-or-leave-it proposition, denying the minority and even members of his own caucus the chance to amend it.
He had saved the ACA and President Obama’s agenda by the time the 2010 election was coming around. He was supposed to lose to Sharron Angle But in the last election of his life he pulled off a stunning upset.
He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2018, but was reported to be in remission a year later.
The cause of his death has yet to the confirmed.
This is a breaking development. I’ll keep updating the story because I honestly haven’t gotten to do breaking news in a long time and I always liked Reid.