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Wed October 21, 2009
Former Governor and Senator Cliff Hansen Dies
By Renny MacKay
Laramie, WY –
A Wyoming icon has died. Former governor and U-S Senator Cliff Hansen died at age 97 last night (Tuesday). Wyoming Public Radio's Renny MacKay reports on his legacy.
Before he moved to Cheyenne as governor and Washington as senator, Cliff Hansen, entered Republican politics in his hometown of Jackson. Hansen gained attention for his opposition to expanding Grand Teton National Park. In an interview with Wyoming Public Radio in 2004 he said that his concern was the park would impede grazing and cattle operations. So, back in the 1940s he and other local ranchers staged a cattle drive into Grand Teton.
"No one was trying to stop us, but we for purposes of publicity carried on the illusion that here we were armed and we were going to put the cattle in there and hell with the park. And we got a pretty good spread in Time magazine."
Hansen later changed his opinion and supported the park service and Grand Teton.
Both Democrats and Republicans are expressing grief over Hansen's passing and recalling him as a great role model.
For Wyoming Public Radio I'm Renny MacKay.