Friday, October 18, 2013

Tom Foley 1929-2013

Former Speaker of the House Tom Foley (D-Wash) died earlier today at his home in Washington D.C., at the age of 84, of complications from a stroke he had suffered last December.  He served as Speaker from 1989, after his predecessor Jim Wright resigned while facing ethics charges, until January 1995, after losing his seat in the election of 1994, when the Republicans took over Congress.  Before becoming Speaker, Foley had served as Majority Whip, Majority Leader and Chairman of the Agriculture Committee.  After leaving Congress, he was appointed Ambassador to Japan by President Bill Clinton.  Foley was the first Speaker from west of the Rocky Mountains, and the first sitting Speaker to be unseated since the Civil War.

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