Walter Mondale Announces a Landslide

My old Atlantic Council colleague Jim Townsend, who went on to spend all eight years of the Obama administration as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for European and NATO Policy, reminds us of a better political age:

I was 14 when Reagan beat Carter, my preferred outcome in the first election I cared about, and barely 15 when Mondale dutifully and graciously carried out his duties. If I saw it at the time, I would surely not have appreciated the profound decency of the man, much less what it said about our democracy.

We’re in many important ways a better, more decent society than we were four decades ago. But, sadly, in some ways less so.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Kathy says:

    Since we’re going there, there’s an ep on the Simpsons involving passing a bill through Congress quickly (no, really), to get airplanes to stop flying over the family’s house (and over poor people’s houses, where they belong).

    They are aided in this effort by a janitor who works in the Capitol, and who looks like Walter Mondale (“Yeah. Looks like”).

    The character wasn’t played by Mondale, though.

  2. CSK says:

    I keep thinking of Preston Brooks of South Carolina nearly beating Charles Sumner of Massachusetts to death on the senate floor in 1856.

    Sumner had just made an anti-slavery speech that chagrined Brooks.

  3. Joe says:

    From the other Mondale thread, just a man in the grocery store, who made a good faith attempt to replace the most powerful man on earth, and yet still needed groceries. The very definition of decent – no, humbly elegant.