The most left wing major party nominee in US history is dead.  I’ll have more to add about him.  His landslide loss was the first Presidential election I paid any attention to at seven years old.  I remember walking into the living room and my parents, with my aunt and uncle, sat glum – staring at the screen.  I asked them what they were watching.  My mother responded, “A monster movie.”

Odd thing was, a poll taken a couple of years later revealed that based upon reporting of how they had voted, it was split half and half.  So many people didn’t want to admit to having voted for the other guy.

Meanwhile, I was ready to vote for McGovern in 1984, but he dropped out before the California primary.

He was indisputably a great man, even if he was the worst campaigner in Presidential race history.  He would have lost anyway, but it should have been a little closer.

During my years in Congress and for the four decades since, I’ve been labeled a ‘bleeding-heart liberal.’ It was not meant as a compliment, but I gladly accept it. My heart does sometimes bleed for those who are hurting in my own country and abroad. A bleeding-heart liberal, by definition, is someone who shows enormous sympathy towards others, especially the least fortunate. Well, we ought to be stirred, even to tears, by society’s ills. And sympathy is the first step toward action. Empathy is born out of the old biblical injunction “Love the neighbor as thyself.”

—George S. McGovern, What It Means to Be a Democrat (2011).

More tomorrow.

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