Former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid Dead at 82: Sources

Former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid Dead at 82: Sources Former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid Dead at 82: Sources Reid in 2015 (Getty)

Tuesday, 28 December 2021 08:36 PM

Harry Reid, the pugnacious son of a Nevada hard-rock miner who rose from poverty to become the U.S. Senate majority leader and earned a reputation as a fierce partisan fighter during an era of political gridlock in Washington, has died at age 82, Senator Chuck Schumer said on Tuesday.

Reid, a former amateur boxer, represented Nevada in the U.S. Congress as a Democrat for more than three decades in both the Senate and House of Representatives.

The cause of death was not announced. Reid had undergone surgery for pancreatic cancer in May 2018.

As majority leader, Reid served as Democratic President Barack Obama's point man in the Senate. In spite of furious Republican opposition, Reid in 2010 helped secure congressional passage of Obama's signature healthcare law known as Obamacare.

He chose not to run for re-election in 2016, a year after suffering broken ribs and facial bones, and injuring an eye in an accident while exercising at home.

Reid had ascended to the job of majority leader in 2007 after the Democrats won control of the Senate. Despite being a political moderate who differed from others in his party on abortion, the environment and gun control, Reid regularly clashed with the Republicans and maintained poor relations with the opposition party's congressional leaders.

"I always would rather dance than fight but I know how to fight," Reid said in 2004.

Reid and his wife, Landra, had five children.

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