Former US Sen. James McClure of Idaho dies

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Associated Press

Posted on February 27, 2011 at 8:02 PM

Updated Sunday, Feb 27 at 8:05 PM

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Former U.S. Sen. James McClure, who spent six years as chairman of the Energy Committee and fought to keep Idaho's wilderness areas controlled by the state, has died. He was 86.

McClure, a Republican who served 24 years in Congress, died Saturday, according to the McClure Center for Public Policy Research at the University of Idaho. The cause of death wasn't immediately released.

McClure earned a reputation as a nuts-and-bolts legislative craftsman while in Congress and was genial but reserved among most colleagues.

He began his political career in the Idaho Senate in 1961, and was elected to the U.S. House in 1966, staying there until his election to the Senate in 1972.

McClure retired from Congress in 1990 at the age of 72, becoming a lobbyist and mining consultant.

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