- James L. Buckley
Infobox Senator | name=James Lane Buckley
jr/sr=United States Senator
January 3, 1971– January 3, 1977
Daniel Patrick Moynihan(D)
date of birth=birth date and age |1923|03|09
place of birth=
New York City
date of death=
place of death=
spouse=Ann Cooley Buckley
James Lane Buckley (born
March 9, 1923in New York City) is a former United States Senator from the state of New Yorkas a member of the Conservative Party of New York. Buckley served from January 3, 1971to January 3, 1977. Formerly, he was vice president and director of the Catawba Corporationfrom 1953 to 1970, and afterwards served as Undersecretary of State for Security Assistance 1981–1982, President of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Inc. 1982–1985, and as a federal judge1985–2000.
He was also the lead
petitionerin a landmark Supreme Court case, " Buckley v. Valeo", in which he successfully challenged the constitutionalityof a law limiting campaign spending in Congressional races.
In 1970 he was elected to the U.S. Senate as a member of the
Conservative Party of New York, winning 38.7 percent of the vote in a three-way race, and served from 1971 until 1977. To date he has been the only member of his party, and the last member of a third party, elected to the U.S. Senate. [Independents Jim Jeffords, Bernie Sandersand Joe Lieberman, and Minnesota Independence Party's Dean Barkley, who was appointed for less than three months, are not included.]
Early life, education and early career
Buckley was born in New York City to lawyer and businessman
William Frank Buckley, Sr., of Irish-Catholic descent, and Aloise Steiner, a Southerner of Swiss-German descent. He is the older brother of conservative writer William F. Buckley, Jr.and the uncle of Christopher Taylor Buckley. He is also the uncle of Brent Bozell. A 1943 graduate of Yale University, where he was a member of Skull & Bones[ Alexandra Robbins, "Secrets of the Tomb: Skull and Bones, the Ivy League, and the Hidden Paths of Power", Little, Brown and Company, 2002, page 168, 174] ["People in the News", Associated Press, May 27, 1983] [Bob Dart, "Skull and bones a secret shared by Bush, Kerry", "The Gazette", March 7, 2004] , Buckley enlisted in the United States Navyin 1942 and was discharged with the rank of lieutenantin 1946. After receiving his lawdegree from Yale Law School, he was admitted to the Connecticutbar in 1950 and practiced law until 1953, when he joined Catawba as vice president and director. Buckley is married to Ann Cooley Buckley and resides in Washington, D.C.and Sharon, Connecticut.
In 1968, Buckley challenged liberal Republican Senator
Jacob Javitsfor re-election. Javits won easily, but Buckley received a large number of votes from disaffected conservativeRepublicans, and in 1970, ran for the U.S. Senate against liberal Republican incumbent Charles Goodell. Goodell had been appointed to the Senate by New York Governor Nelson Rockefellerfollowing the assassination of Senator Robert F. Kennedyand had made a name for himself in the Senate as an opponent of the Vietnam War. Buckley's campaign slogan, plastered on billboards statewide, was "Isn't it time we had a Senator?" [ [http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/chi-0703150099mar15,1,850637.column Topic Galleries - chicagotribune.com ] ]
With Goodell and the Democratic nominee,
Richard Ottinger, splitting the liberal vote, Buckley won a plurality(38 percent) and entered the Senate in January 1971.
In 1974, he proposed a "human life" amendment, which defined the term "person" in the
Fourteenth Amendmentto include the embryo.
In his 1976 re-election bid, with Rockefeller's liberal GOP faction falling apart, Buckley received the Republican nomination. Initially, he was favored for re-election, because the frontrunner in the crowded Democratic field was
ManhattanCongresswoman Bella Abzug, a liberal feministreviled by the right. But when Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the U.S. Ambassador to the UN, made a late entrance into the Democratic primary and narrowly defeated Abzug, Buckley could no longer count on getting the votes of moderateDemocrats. Moynihan went on to defeat Buckley by a wide margin.
After his loss, Buckley moved to
Connecticut, and in 1980 received the Republican nomination for the Senate seat being vacated by the retirement of Abraham Ribicoff. He lost the general election to Christopher Dodd, who still serves in the Senate.
He was the last Senator to be elected from a party other than the Democrats or Republicans. Since 1974, three independent candidates (
Bernie Sandersof Vermontand Joe Liebermanof Connecticut in 2006, and Harry F. Byrd, Jr.of Virginia in 1976) have been elected, but no minor-party candidates have won election to the Senate.
1976 Republican National Convention
1976 Republican National Convention, then-Senator Jesse Helmsencouraged a "Draft Buckley" movement, as an effort to stop the nomination of Ronald Reaganfor President. Reagan had announced that PennsylvaniaSenator Richard Schweikerwould be his running-mate if picked; Helms believed that Schweiker was too liberal. The "Draft Buckley" movement was mooted when President Gerald Fordvery narrowly won the party's nomination on the first ballot. ["World Almanac and Book of Facts 1977] [>http://openweb.tvnews.vanderbilt.edu/1976-8/1976-08-11-NBC-2.html]
In the first
Reagan administration, Buckley initially served as an undersecretary of State and then as president of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty from 1982 until 1985. Appointed a federal judge in 1985 by Reagan, he left his post at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty to serve on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. He became a senior (semi-retired) judge of that Court in 1996.
* Buckley, James Lane (1975). "If Men Were Angels: A View From the Senate." New York: Putnam. ISBN 0-399-11589-7.
* Buckley, James Lane (2006). "Gleanings from an Unplanned Life: An Annotated Oral History." Wilmington: Intercollegiate Studies institute. ISBN 978-1-933859-11-8.
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