Completing our list of the 6 greatest senators in U.S. history, Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts, 1962-2009.
I hardly need to go into Kennedy's many accomplishments for this audience. But his advocacy on the behalf of underprivileged people surpasses virtually every senator in American history. His knowledge of Senate procedure helped Democrats defeat much of Reagan's agenda. And his ability to get deals made created a lot of legislation, not all of which I agree with (No Child Left Behind for instance), but all of which he worked on with the best of intentions and an instinct for what could get done in a particular political climate.