Political Force Remembered
Auckland-born Leo McCarthy, a prominent figure in Californian state politics, has died of a kidney ailment aged 76. A lifelong Democrat, McCarthy was the state assembly speaker from 1974-80 and went on to serve a record three terms as lieutenant governor of California. “Never did he lose sight of what his purpose was there, which was to make life better for people in California,” said current lieutenant governor John Garamendi. “Leo set the standard among modern lieutenant governors.” The McCarthys left NZ for San Francisco in 1934, when Leo was just three years old. He studied at the University of San Francisco before beginning his career in politics as a campaign manager and aide to a state senator. Nearly a thousand mourners attended his funeral at San Francisco’s St Ignatius Church, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, John Garamendi and former San Francisco mayor and Assembly speaker Willie Brown.
Leo McCarthy: August 15 1930 – February 5 2007