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Ex-House Speaker Tom Foley dies at 84

by By ALAN FRAM, Associated Press on October 18, 2013 12:09 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former House Speaker Tom Foley has died at the age of 84 in his home.

Foley's wife, Heather, said the Washington state Democrat died at his home in the nation's capital.

Foley became the first speaker since the Civil War to fail to win re-election in his home district.

The courtly politician lost his seat in the "Republican Revolution" of 1994. The Democrat had never served a single day in the minority. He was defeated by Republican Spokane lawyer George Nethercutt.

Foley served as U.S. ambassador to Japan for four years during the Clinton administration. But he spent the most time in the House, serving 30 years including more than five as speaker.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

PHOTO: In this June 1989 file photo, former Speaker of the U.S. of Representatives Tom Foley poses in his 5th Congressional District office in Spokane, Wash. Foley has died at the age of 84, according to House Democratic aides on Friday, Oct. 18, 2013, who spoke on condition of anonymity. Foley was a Washington state lawmaker who became the first speaker since the Civil War who failed to win re-election in his home district. He was U.S. ambassador to Japan for four years during the Clinton administration. But he spent the most time in the House, serving 30 years including more than five as speaker. (AP Photo/Jeff T. Green, file)

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