Baseball, Clean Air Act, Cohen, William S., Iran-Contra, Maine congressional delegation, Percy, Charles H., Republican Party, U.S. Senate campaign (1982), U.S. Senate culture, U.S. Senate retirement
Thomas A. Daffron was born on January 23, 1949, in New York City. He received a bachelor’s degree from Brown University and a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University. Prior to going to Washington D.C., he worked as a newspaper reporter. He was chief of staff for Senators Bill Cohen, Fred Thompson, Mo Udall, and Lisa Murkowski, and as a speechwriter for Chuck Percy. He has also worked for International Paper in Maine and for the Baltimore Orioles, and he has been a consultant to Senator Susan Collins. At the time of this interview, he was COO for Jefferson Consulting Group in Washington, D.C.
Interview includes discussion of: family background and education; fellowship to learn about Congress in Washington, DC; Senator Percy and moderate republicanism; transition to working for Senator Cohen; campaigning on foot with Bill Cohen; the Maine delegation while Daffron was working for Cohen; cooperation among the Maine delegation; Cohen’s run against Hathaway for Senate; reaction in Cohen’s office when Mitchell was selected to fill Muskie’s seat; Mitchell’s entering the Maine delegation; the 1982 election; Mitchell’s rise in leadership; Cohen’s reaction to Mitchell’s rise; tension with the Bush administration; Clean Air Act amendments; Mitchell’s retirement; Daffron’s work with Thompson and Murkowski in the late-‘90s; Daffron’s consulting work for Susan Collins; increased partisanship in the Senate; what makes a good chief of staff for a senator; Mitchell’s legacy; and Iran-Contra.
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