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Tom McNary (Napoleon's World)

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John Thomas "Tom" McNary III (born October 18, 1926) was a Democratic U.S. Representative from New York who served in Congress from 1967 to 2009. McNary served in multiple districts but always the Buffalo, NY area, where he was born and raised in a political family - his father was a longtime Mayor of Buffalo and a failed candidate for Governor of New York, and his grandfather served on the New York State Supreme Court for thirty years. He was the only member of his family to go by "Tom" to distinguish himself from his father and grandfather.

A decided liberal with strong union ties, McNary served, in his long career, on the House Finance Committee, was a Deputy Majority Whip from 1991-1995 in the left-wing leadership team of Speaker Charlie Platt, and was the House Ways and Means Committee Chairman from 1999 to 2005, when House rules termed out committee chairpersons after three terms. However, despite his identification with the party's left on economic matters, he was a social conservative Roman Catholic who opposed most cases of abortion, voted for bills to ban gays from serving in the military and for the 1997 Defense of Marriage Act, and supported public money for parochial schools. Serving 42 years, he is the longest-serving member of Congress in New York history.

Personal Life

McNary was married to Lois Broadman (1930-2011) for nearly sixty years, after they met at Columbia when he was at law school. McNary was a lifelong Buffalo Bills fan, not missing a home game between 1960 and 2006, when he missed a home game due to a stroke he was treated for at a hospital. It was the only game he missed in fifty-four years. McNary once referred to the Bills as "the pride of Western New York."

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