ROCHESTER, Minn. - The state of Minnesota and the nation are mourning the loss of former Vice President Walter Mondale. Mondale’s family announced his death at the age of 93 on Monday.
Mondale is being remembered for his lasting impact on the office of vice president as well as being the first presidential candidate to choose a woman as his running mate.
The Minnesota native became attorney general of his home state at 32 years old and was elected to the U.S. Senate before being tapped as President Jimmy Carter’s Democratic running mate in 1976.
After Carter’s victory he moved the vice president’s office to the west wing of the White House and began having weekly lunches with the president which are traditions that still stand today.
Rochester’s League of Women Voters say one important step Mondale took for women’s rights was when he picked Geraldine Ferraro as his running mate when he campaigned for president in 1984.
Member Amy Caucutt said, “In rights for women you have to take a small step and wait a generation, or in the case of us getting the right to vote three generations. In this case it was just a single generation before we actually then finally had ourselves a woman vice president.”
The league says Mondale’s marriage to Joan Adams also served as a model of equality as he backed her efforts to push for more government support of the arts.
The Mondale family said in a statement plans for memorials will be announced later for both Minnesota and Washington D.C.