The third oldest living former United States Senator is a New Jerseyan, George Smathers, who turns 93 on November 13. Smathers was born in Atlantic City, the nephew of William Smathers, a Democrat who defeated U.S. Senator Hamilton Kean (the great-grandfather of Thomas Kean, Jr.) in 1936.
George Smathers grew up in Florida, served as a lawyer for the Truman administration, and at age 33 won election to the U.S. House of Representatives -- part of the 1946 freshman class that included John F. Kennedy and Richard M. Nixon.
Smathers ran for the U.S. Senate in 1950, defeating incumbent Claude Pepper in an epic Democratic primary. Time Magazine reported that during that campaign, Smathers asked a rural Florida audience: "Are you aware that Claude Pepper is known all over Washington as a shameless extrovert? Not only that, but this man is reliably reported to practice nepotism with his sister-in-law, and he has a sister who was once a thespian in wicked New York Worst of all, it is an established fact that Mr. Pepper before his marriage habitually practiced celibacy." Smathers strongly denied making those comments and offered a $10,00 reward to anyone who could prove he said it. No one could. Smathers retired in 1968 to pursue a more lucrative career as a Washington lobbyist.
The oldest living former U.S. Senator is Clifford Hansen, a Republican from Wyoming, who turns 94 in October. Robert Stafford, a Vermont Republican who was born three months before Smathers. Smathers is the only surviving member of the U.S. Senate during Harry Truman's presidency.
President Barack Obama will return to New Jersey next week to tour the Jersey Shore with Gov. Chris Christie.Read More >
Christie cuts Jersey Shore reopening ribbon on “Today’ Show Gov. Chris Christie is walking the Jersey shore Friday morning along with members of the TODAY show. The governor is appearing on the morning news program ahead of the Memorial Day weekend. The TODAY show appearance is the first of...
By Tedford J. Taylor No topic is a less likely conversation-starter than our eventual deaths. Still, there is a lot to talk about. When polled, about 90 percent of people presented with end-of-life scenarios prefer the prospect of dying at home with... Read More >
"Hudson must support Hudson." - state Senator/North Bergen Mayor Nick Sacco.- PolitickerNJ.com
Press releases are submitted by PolitickerNJ users, not by staff. They do not represent the viewpoint of PolitickerNJ.com.