News

Former Vermont U.S. Sen. Jeffords dies at 80

Former Vermont U.S. Sen. Jeffords dies at 80

JIM JEFFORDS: In this May 24, 2001, file photo, Sen. Jim Jeffords of Vermont announces he will become an independent at a news conference in Burlington, Vt. Photo: Associated Press/Toby Talbot

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — The former U.S. senator from Vermont who in 2001 tipped control of the Senate when he quit the Republican Party to become an independent has died. James Jeffords was 80.

Diane Derby, a former aide, says Jeffords died Monday in Washington. She said he had been in declining health.

Jeffords had announced in 2005 that he would not seek a fourth term, citing his and his wife’s health problems. His wife, Liz, died in 2007.

PHOTOS: 2014 Notable Deaths

Jeffords served more than 30 years in Washington. He won election to the House in 1974 as a Republican.

He was the only Republican in the House to vote against President Ronald Reagan’s tax cuts in 1981. A decade late, upset with President George W. Bush’s opposition to the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act, Jeffords decided that was the last straw. In May of 2001, he declared he would leave the Republicans and caucus with the Democrats.

Local Headlines

in Local

Horizons Unlimited Recycling Ending

Horizons

Horizons Unlimited in Emmetsburg will stop recycling...

in Local

Sanders In Northwest Iowa

Bernie Sanders

Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders was in northwest Iowa Friday.

in Local

Lottery Money To Veterans

Iowa Lottery

A change in Iowa law directs the Iowa Lottery to send two-and-half million dollars each year to the Iowa Veterans Trust Fund...

in Local

Marijuana Arrests

handcuffs

Two from Cherokee are jailed on drug related charges...

in Local

Kossuth House Explosion

policelights

Authorities respond to an explosion in a house...