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Warren Grant "Maggie" Magnuson (April 12, 1905–May 20, 1989) was a United States Senator of the Democratic Party from Washingtonmarker from 1944 until 1981. Upon leaving the Senate, he was the most senior member of the body. Magnuson also served as a member of the United States House of Representatives, representing the from 1937 to 1944.

Magnuson, who was of Norwegianmarker and Swedishmarker parentage, was born in Moorhead, Minnesotamarker. In 1928 he married Peggins Maddieux, who had won the 1927 "Miss Seattle" beauty contest. Magnuson divorced in 1935 and dated a number of glamorous women, including heiress and cover girl June Millarde and actress Carol Parker. In 1964, he married Jermaine Peralta with whom he remained for the rest of his life.

In 1932 Magnuson was a founding member of The Young Democrats of Washington.

Magnuson served in the Washington State Legislature and as King Countymarker Prosecutor. Magnuson was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1936, filling a vacancy caused by the suicide of fellow Democrat Marion Zioncheck on August 7, 1936. He won re-election in 1938, 1940, and 1942. After the Attack on Pearl Harbormarker Magnuson was a staunch supporter of the U.S. war effort.

In 1944, Magnuson successfully ran for U.S. Senate. He was appointed on December 14, 1944 to fill the vacancy created by Homer Bone's appointment to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, thus resigning from the House and starting his service in the Senate a month early.

Magnuson served in the United States Navy during World War II. He was aboard the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise for several months, seeing heavy combat in the Pacific Theatre until President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered all congressmen on active duty to return home.

He was re-elected in 1950, 1956, 1962, 1968, and 1974. He served on the Senate Commerce Committee throughout his tenure in the Senate, and the Senate Appropriations Committee during his final term. Magnuson served most of his tenure in the Senate alongside his friend and Democratic colleague from Washington State, Henry M. "Scoop" Jackson. Magnuson was defeated in a bid for re-election by Slade Gorton in 1980.

At least three important pieces of legislation bear his name: the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the Chinese Exclusion Repeal Act of 1943 (commonly referred to as the Magnuson Act), and the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. He was also instrumental in keeping supertankers out of Puget Soundmarker, by slipping an amendment to a routine funding reauthorization bill through on the Senate and House consent calendars.

Magnuson was a member of Theta Chi fraternity.

Namesakes

  • The University of Washingtonmarker's Health Sciences building complex (Warren G.marker Magnuson Health Sciences Buildingmarker) was named in his honor in 1970. Magnuson's Senate desk is located in an alcove in the Suzzallo Librarymarker graduate reading room.
  • Seattlemarker's Magnuson Parkmarker was named in his honor in 1977.
  • The Washington State Democratic Party holds an annual Magnuson awards dinner (sometimes referred to as the Maggies, per his nickname).
  • The Intercollegiate College of Nursing building in Spokane, WA on Fort George Wright Drive near Spokane Falls Community College is also named after him.


Notes and References

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