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Former senator James McClure of Idaho dies at 86

February 27, 2011 |  7:38 pm

Former U.S. Sen. James McClure, who spent six years as chairman of the Energy Committee and fought to keep Idaho's wilderness areas controlled by the state, has died. He was 86.

McClure, a Republican who served 24 years in Congress, died Saturday, according to the McClure Center for Public Policy Research at the University of Idaho. The cause of death was complications from a series of strokes, his family said.

McClure, who was born Dec. 27, 1924, began his political career in the Idaho Senate in 1961. He was elected to the U.S. House in 1966, staying there until his election to the Senate in 1972.

McClure retired from Congress in 1990 at the age of 65, becoming a lobbyist and mining consultant.

-- Associated Press