THE VICE PRESIDENCY: No. 2 Made His Points

Far from being a mere appendage to the winning ticket, Walter Frederick Mondale turned out to be a considerable asset. With unflagging energy and unfailing good humor—even when his staff steered him to factory gates after shifts had changed—Mondale effectively worked the northern tier of the U.S. His assignment was to build bridges between Jimmy Carter and the sizable Democratic blocs that did not know the Georgian well: ethnics, labor, liberals.

Mondale pursued his assignment doggedly—and with more zest than he had shown in his own earlier aborted presidential quest. He improved on...

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