Champion of The Elderly

At 82, Claude Pepper is at the peak of his career

"There are only two Democrats who really bug Reagan," says a presidential aide. "One is Tip O'Neill, and the other is that Congressman who keeps talking about Social Security."

That Congressman watches the world through trifocals. He wears a pacemaker in his chest to quicken his heartbeat when it slows. One of his heart valves is synthetic; it replaced the natural one that developed a calcium deposit. He is nearly deaf without his hearing aids. A bulbous nose dominates his rumpled face, which...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!