Former Sen. John Warner of Virginia Expires at 94

From The Associated Press

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Former Sen. John W. Warner of Virginia, a centrist Republican who served as Navy secretary and among the Senate’s strongest military specialists, has died at 94, his longtime chief of staff said Wednesday.


“He was brittle but had a good deal of soul and was involved before his final days,” Magill said.


Warner, a courtly figure who squired actors and was married to Elizabeth Taylor if he had been elected to the Senate in 1978, went to serve five conditions until retiring from the room in 2008. He attracted support from moderates of both significant parties, setting himself at the middle of American politics.


He had been a key supporter of President George W. Bush’s announcement of war in Iraq, also functioned for some time as chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee. However he had been hugely popular with Virginia voters.


Being the roughest of Taylor’s seven husbands did not hurt when Warner ran for the Senate. Taylor wrote afterwards they stayed friends, but she”just could not endure the extreme loneliness” when he became entangled in his Senate responsibilities.


After years of competition, both became great pals. Mark Warner said that his buddy”epitomizes what it means to be a senator.”


“For me, he had been the gold standard in Virginia,” Warner said Wednesday,” post on Twitter he had been”devastated” by the news. I will miss you, John.”


As a senator, Warner obtained support from moderates in both parties. The courtly senator with chiseled features and a thick shock of grey hair was so hot with Virginia voters that Democrats didn’t bother to challenge him in 2002 because of his re-election into his fifth semester.


“Virginia has dropped an unmatched leader, along with my family has lost a beloved friend,” said Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va. “After I arrived at the Senate, I knew even more profoundly the effect of John Warner. I came to understand John McCain, Carl Levin, and a lot of others who served with him attested to his ethics and outsized effect in a body that he loved dearly.”


Warner was an early supporter of McCain’s campaign for presidentendorsing his fellow senator at February 2007.


Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Md., tweeted Wednesday the Warner’s support”won’t be forgotten”


“When I arrived at the Senate, he had been a powerful regional partner,” he composed. “Republican and Democrat had discussions but found common ground on the surroundings, Chesapeake Bay, Metro and much more.”


Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, tweeted he and his spouse were saddened to hear of his former colleague’s departure, stating Warner”served his country and a veteran & senator” and that he”loved his friendship & collegiality for those 28yrs we served together”


Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, a Democrat, said in a statement that his nation and the state have”missing a giant” and ordered that the country flag fly half-staff within the Virginia Capitol on the day of his funeral.


Jim Jeffords’ departure from the GOP put Democrats in charge of the Senate, but he recovered it after the 2002 elections set Republicans back accountable before the 2006 elections.


Warner regularly defended the Bush administration’s handling of this war in Iraq, but he also revealed a willingness to buck the White House.


Following a 2007 visit to Iraq, Warner called upon Bush to begin bringing troops home.


House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., known as Warner that a”hero in the army and also a respected leader in the Senate.”


“In Congress, most of us knew him as a voice of courage, conviction and comity; a pioneer unafraid to speak the truth but constantly dedicated to finding common ground and consensus,” she said in a statement Wednesday.


That exact same year, Warner was the only senator to officially object to the government stepping in on the Terri Schiavo right-to-die case.


“Greater wisdom isn’t necessarily reposed from the branches of national government,” he explained at the moment. He’d softly inserted his statement to the Congressional Record hours following the measure passed the Senate on a voice vote.


Republicans nominated Warner to the Senate in 1978 following the party’s first option, Richard Obenshain, died in a plane crash. Warner was ridiculed by a person who believed he had been riding the coattails of his then-wife, Taylor, whom he’d wed in late 1976.


Warner was chosen by the razor-thin perimeter of 4,721 votes from 1.2 million throw and has been readily re-elected in 1984 and 1990.


Marshall Coleman, who attracted sufficient moderate and independent GOP votes to make sure Robb’s re-election.


Steamed by what they viewed as disloyalty to the celebration, GOP conservatives attempted to deny him a fourth term in 1996, backing a challenge by former Reagan administration budget manager Jim Miller.


Miller depicted Warner as an elitist who invested much time squiring celebrities, such as Barbara Walters. However, Warner readily defeated Miller from the first, and proceeded to conquer Democrat Mark Warner from the general election.


“I certain risked my political future, that is for certain,” Warner said in 1994. “But I had rather the voters of the nation recall I stumbled in my own principle. … That is the amount of leadership”


While the army was Warner’s top priority, he also championed legislation to toughen seat belt legislation and took an increasing amount of environmental concerns.


He entered law school at the University of Virginia in the autumn of 1949 but volunteered another year to its Marines, serving in Korea as a first lieutenant and communications officer with the First Marine Air Wing.


After Korea, he returned to law school and got a diploma from U.Va. in 1953.


He had been a law clerk in the United States Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, went to private practice, then served four years as a federal prosecutor.


In 1960he declared private practice and specialized in banking, corporate and securities training.


Warner acquired a estimated $7 million chance at the breakup of his first marriage, to Catherine Mellon, daughter of multimillionaire Paul Mellon.


He also Taylor divorced in 1982 and he married property agent Jeanne Vander Myde at 2003.


Warner had three children, Mary, Virginia and John, and was part of the Episcopal Church.