MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Former Vice President Walter Mondale, a liberal icon who lost the most lopsided presidential election after bluntly telling voters to expect a tax increase if he won, has died.
He was 93. Mondale's family says he died Monday in Minneapolis. Mondale served Minnesota as attorney general and U.S. senator.
He followed the trail blazed by his political mentor, Hubert H. Humphrey, to the vice presidency, serving under Jimmy Carter from 1977 to 1981.
Mondale's own try for the White House, in 1984, came at the zenith of Ronald Reagan's popularity.
On Election Day, he carried only his home state and the District of Columbia.
A statement from Governor Tim Walz following the death of Vice President Walter Mondale:
“Today, Minnesota and the nation mourn the loss of a beloved public servant. Gwen and I mourn the loss of a dear friend and mentor.”
“Walter Mondale believed in and worked to create a nation with a heart, a soul, and a conscience. He believed that the greatness of America is found in the everyday men and women who build our nation, do its work, and defend its freedoms. And he fought tirelessly for those values until the very end of his life, imploring each of us through his example to continue the fight.”
“We will miss terribly Fritz Mondale, the steady voice and vision setter for ideas great and small, people powerful and powerless, and justice waiting to be revealed.”
Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan released the following statement:
“One of my earliest memories was telling my kindergarten classmates to go home and tell their parents to vote for Walter Mondale and Geraldine Ferraro in 1984. I’m so proud Minnesota was there for him that day.”
“For me, Vice President Walter Mondale wasn’t just the nice guy on TV who served ably as Minnesota Attorney General, U.S. Senator and Vice President. It was like he was part of our family. My grandmother, Mary Hartmann, was so involved in DFL politics when Walter Mondale was coming up that Walter delivered a message for her funeral. The first campaign I ever worked on was for Senator Paul Wellstone, and when Paul died, Mondale was there to stand in his stead on the ballot.”
“My mother, who worked on Hubert Humphrey’s campaign for president in 1968, instilled in me that government and elected leaders should work to make people’s lives better. That was Walter Mondale. We don’t always get it right, but he succeeded more than not.”
“The last time we spoke, Mondale had only encouraging words for me – perhaps knowing how hard it is sometimes to be in public office. The nicest thing he ever said was that my grandmother would be really proud of me.”
“Walter Mondale was an inspiration and mentor to generations of people in Minnesota and across this country who went on to serve the public in any number of ways. His death in this week of trauma for Minnesota calls us to our better angels and reminds us that, for all our humanly faults, we must never stop trying to do better by people.”
“Thank you for everything, Fritz. I’m smiling thinking about the reunion you’re having with Joan and Eleanor.”
The governor also ordered all Minnesota flags to be flown at half-staff at all state buildings in Minnesota immediately following the news of the former vice president.
Walz made the order to start Monday night until sunset on the day of the interment of former Vice President Walter Frederick Mondale, to honor his life and legacy.
Minnesota is joining the many states across the nation honoring Vice President Walter Mondale.