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Like most of the world, I first saw Tom Eagleton on television. It was the summer of 1972, when Eagleton was asked by George McGovern to be his running mate in what turned out to be a doomed presidential bid against Richard Nixon. As a college sophomore, I had never heard of Eagleton, but I certainly liked what I saw: the son of another St. Louis lawyer, he had served in the Navy, graduated from Harvard Law School, turned to public service, and been elected in quick succession as city attorney, Missouri attorney general, Lieutenant Governor and then U.S. Senator, all the while not yet forty. He had the courage to become an early opponent of the Vietnam War, and came across on television as the able, down-to-earth, humble, and moral person I later came to know.
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