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CUA Law’s Most Senior Alumnus in Congress is Officially Retired


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When the 114th United States Congress officially came into session on Jan. 3, 2015, it marked the first time since 1984 that the name of Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin will not be included in the roll call for the U.S. Senate.
The long-serving democrat, a 1972 graduate of the Columbus School of Law (as is his wife, Ruth) was the law school’s most senior alumnus in Congress by far. Harkin was elected to the House of Representatives in 1974 and to the Senate a decade later.
His 30-year career was distinguished by passionate advocacy for issues he cared deeply about, including education, disability rights, health reform, farmland conservation, and biomedical research, to name just a few.  
Harkin announced two years ago that he would not seek a sixth term in the United States Senate.
Posted to his web site, Harkin’s farewell to Iowa voters stated in part,
…”The leaving becomes hard and wrenching and yes, emotional. That’s because I love this U.S. Senate and I love this work…. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to do this work. Thank you for entrusting me with the job of advocating for the betterment of our state and country for the past 40 years. It has been the greatest honor of my lifetime.”
Regional and national media took notice of his planned departure from the Senate. A sample of coverage examining Harkins’s legislative legacy includes: 

12/07/2014 - WHO TV Des Moines
Senator Tom Harkin on The Insiders
12/01/2014 - Agri-Pulse
Open Mic with Tom Harkin
11/30/2014 - The Cedar Rapids Gazette
The Harkin Legacy
11/28/2014 - The Cedar Rapids Gazette
Editorial: "I'm a Legislator"
9/23/2014 - Washington Post
New Deal liberalism lives on
9/20/2014 - The Des Moines Register
Harkin still firmly believes government can do good