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Posted at 8:35 PM ET, 01/25/2010

Charles McC. Mathias Jr. dies

By Eric Athas

Charles McC. Mathias Jr., a three-term U.S. senator from Maryland who often clashed with his party’s leaders over court nominations, the Vietnam War and social issues as one of the last unabashed Republican liberals in the Senate, died Monday at his home in Chevy Chase. He had Parkinson’s disease.

Sen. Mathias was elected to the House of Representatives in 1960 as a moderate Republican, but he soon found himself out of step with a party that was moving increasingly to the right. During his four terms in the House, he helped sponsor civil rights legislation, called for a halt to U.S. bombing of North Vietnam and mapped out a political direction built, in his words, on principle rather than political expediency.

--Matt Schudel

By Eric Athas  | January 25, 2010; 8:35 PM ET
Categories:  DC, Maryland  | Tags:  Charles McC. Mathias Jr., Maryland, U.S. senator  
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It's typical to say that "we shall not see his like again." I fear we won't. I hope, for all our sakes, we will.

Posted by: Bertilak | January 25, 2010 8:46 PM | Report abuse

'ol mac would never make it out of the primaries these days....nope, we're stuck with the taliban wing for the rest of time

Posted by: SofaKingCool2009 | January 25, 2010 9:44 PM | Report abuse

In 1980, I was candidate in the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate which if I had won would have me running against Senator Mathias. I knew my chances of beating him were near zero. In fact the Democratic nominee got less than 40% of the vote. As result of me running, I got to know him and during my 50 years in politics in Md,and DC. he ranks at the top of my list.
He was a person you could not keeping from admiring his honesty and committment to what he stood for. It was an honor for me to have known him even though I would have been his opponent for the U.S.Senate.

Posted by: melcottone | January 26, 2010 8:03 AM | Report abuse

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