Considered one of his proudest legislative achievements, he mentioned, was his management position in making it simpler for the Senate to lower off a filibuster with 60 votes, underneath a rule change, moderately than a two-thirds vote, as was beforehand required. Considered one of his greatest regrets, he mentioned, was his delay, till 1969, in turning towards the Vietnam Warfare.
By the Nineteen Seventies Mr. Mondale’s identify was on lists of doable candidates for nationwide workplace. Dutifully, he wrote a marketing campaign ebook, “The Accountability of Energy: Towards a Accountable Presidency” (1975), by which he criticized the “imperial presidency” of Richard M. Nixon, after which joined the race for the 1976 presidential nomination.
The marketing campaign went nowhere. “I do not forget that after a yr I used to be operating six factors behind ‘Don’t Know,’” Mr. Mondale mentioned within the 2010 interview. He ended the bid early, in 1974. In withdrawing, he mentioned he lacked an “overwhelming need to be president.” The remark would come to hang-out him.
No. 2 With a Say
The Democratic victor, Mr. Carter, a conservative Southerner, was on the lookout for a liberal operating mate from the North who might assist him choose up assist within the industrial states. Mr. Mondale was on the prime of all people’s checklist, however he had combined emotions till he bought an settlement from the nominee that he would have a full-fledged coverage position, expanded from the largely ceremonial capabilities assigned to most vice presidents.
Mr. Mondale’s chief of employees, Richard Moe, mentioned Mr. Humphrey had been equally persuasive. “‘Fritz,’ he mentioned, ‘if in case you have an opportunity to be vice chairman, it’s best to take it,’” Mr. Moe recalled.
In workplace, Mr. Carter was true to his phrase in giving him main duties within the White Home, Mr. Mondale mentioned in 2010. “Carter did hearken to me rather a lot, I feel,” he mentioned. “I attempted to keep away from giving a win-loss report. However he was marvelous to me and to Joan. They by no means insulted our independence or integrity or place.”
Some within the president’s circle, like Zbigniew Brzezinski, the nationwide safety adviser, later belittled Mr. Mondale’s enter as consisting largely of political recommendation. In a single occasion, Mr. Mondale argued unsuccessfully towards imposing a grain embargo on the Soviet Union after its invasion of Afghanistan on the finish of 1979.