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Tom Hayden | The Nation

Tom Hayden

Author Bios

Tom Hayden

Senator Tom Hayden, the Nation Institute's Carey McWilliams Fellow, has played an active role in American politics and history for over three decades, beginning with the student, civil rights and antiwar movements of the 1960s.

"Tom Hayden changed America," wrote Nicholas Lemann, national correspondent for The Atlantic, of Hayden's role in the 1960s. Richard Goodwin, former speechwriter for John Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson, said that Hayden, "without even knowing it, inspired the Great Society."

Hayden was elected to the California State Legislature in 1982, where he served for ten years in the Assembly before being elected to the State Senate in 1992, where he served eight years.

Hayden has been described as "the conscience of the Senate" by columnist Dan Walters of the Sacramento Bee, and as "the liberal rebel" by George Skelton of the Los Angeles Times. "He has carved out a key watchdog role," according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

He is author of over 175 measures ranging from reform of money in politics, worker safety, school decentralization, small business tax relief, domestic violence, lessening gang violence in the inner city, stopping student fee increases at universities, protecting endangered species like salmon, overhauling three strikes, you're out laws, and a measure signed into law that will assist Holocaust survivors in receiving recognition and compensation for having been exploited as slave labor during the Nazi era.

Hayden is the author of eleven books, including his autobiography, Reunion; a book on the spirituality and the environment, Lost Gospel of the Earth; a collection of essays on the aftermath of the Irish potato famine, Irish Hunger (Roberts Rhinehart) and a book on his Irish background, Irish on the Inside: In Search of the Soul of Irish America (Verso); Radical Nomad, a biography of C. Wright Mills (Paradigm Publishers); and, most recently, Ending the War in Iraq (2007). A collection of his work, Writings for a Democratic Society: The Tom Hayden Reader was published this year .

Articles

News and Features

When Robert Dreyfuss attacks Obama's policies on Afghanistan, it's not helpful to the progressive cause.

Will the missing issues of gangs, poverty, dropouts, the inner city and policing redefine the presidential debate?

Bob Woodward's new book on the Bush years in Iraq raises the possibility that extrajudicial killings--not the surge--were the biggest factor in reducing violence.

The challenge to the peace movement is not to liberalize the empire; the task is to peacefully and steadily bring it to an end--and make democracy safe for the world.

It was a barely good week for the antiwar movement in Denver; peace voters face huge challenges in the election season ahead.

McCain and the neocons are heating up a conflict in the Caucasus; it's up to the peace movement to keep Obama from signing on.

If millions are to be spent on an anti-Iraq, anti-McCain message, the money will come from the Obama campaign or not at all.

Assessing Barack Obama's mythic destiny: will he become more Athenian than Spartan?

In a huge setback for John McCain and the Bush Administration, Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki endorses Barack Obama's timeline for withdrawal--and the presumptive Democratic nominee could reap a windfall.

Obama's plan to de-escalate the war in Iraq only to ramp up another in Afghanistan just might work. It could also entrap the US in an even wider quagmire.

Blogs

Our contributors reflect on the legacy of the invasion and the destruction, and disillusionment, that followed.