Mike Gravel, former US senator for Alaska, dies at 91

Mike Gravel, a former U.S. senator from Alaska who read the Pentagon Papers into the Congressional Record and confronted Barack Obama about nuclear weapons during a later presidential run, has died.

Gravel, who represented Alaska as a Democrat in the Senate from 1969 to 1981, died Saturday, according to his daughter, Lynne Mosier. Gravel had been living in Seaside, California, and was in failing health, said Theodore W. Johnson, a former aide.

Gravel’s two terms came during tumultuous years for Alaska when construction of the trans-Alaska oil pipeline was authorized and when Congress was deciding how to settle Alaska Native land claims and whether to classify enormous amounts of federal land as parks, preserves and monuments.

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