American Political Leader
American politician Everett Dirksen was born in Pekin, Illinois, and served in World War I. After the war, he returned to his hometown to practice law.
In 1932, Dirksen was elected to the House of Representatives as a Republican, where he remained until 1948. In 1950, he ran successfully for the US Senate, serving there until his death.
Dirksen became party whip in 1957 and minority leader in 1959. A popular Republican, he supported Senator Joseph McCarthy and maintained a conservative posture in both foreign and domestic affairs.
In the 1960s, Dirksen moderated his views, helping President Kennedy pass the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty in 1963 and supporting President Johnson's Civil Rights legislation.