Gary Hart Biography

U.S. Representative (1936–)
Presidential-hopeful Gary Hart withdrew from the 1988 campaign after rumors of an affair surfaced. He served in the Senate from 1974 to 1986.


Gary Hart was born on November 28, 1936, in Ottowa, Kansas. A Yale law graduate, he helped George McGovern with his presidential campaign from 1970 to 1972. Hart entered the Senate in 1974, but retired in 1986 to focus on his own presidential bid. Rumors of an affair with model Donna Rice ultimately ended his campaign. He retired from politics, but still speaks publicly on issues.


Gary Hart was born in Ottawa, Kansas, on November 28, 1936, later studying at Yale, and establishing a law practice in Denver, Colorado. After managing George McGovern's presidential campaign in the early 1970s, Hart entered the United States Senate in 1974.

A "neo-liberal" seeking to combine social and environmental reform with enhanced economic efficiency, Hart ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1984 in a close race with Walter Mondale. He retired from the Senate in 1986 to concentrate on a bid for the presidency, which proved unsuccessful following media allegations about his personal life, particularly about an affair with Donna Rice. Upon his retirement from office, Hart consults and speaks on a number issues including homeland security and the environment. 

Hart had contemplated running for the 2004 presidential Democratic primaries, but opted not to. He is the author of several books, including Russia Shakes the World: The Second Russian Revolution (1991), The Courage of Our Convictions: A Manifesto for Democrats (2006) and The Republic of Conscience (2015).

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