Edward M. Kennedy is one of the most influential senators in Congress. For the last 35 years, he's played a major role in events ranging from the Vietnam War to Supreme Court confirmations. He's also been closely associated with issues such as health care, civil rights and campaign finance reform. More than the foremost lawmaker and best orator in the Senate, he's enthralled (and disappointed) a generation who saw him as the keeper of his famous brothers' flame. He's seen America -- and her politics -- change in drastic ways. In this definitive biography, New York Times Washington Editor Adam Clymer draws an in-depth portrait of this complex man. Through interviews with Kennedy, and the people close to him, he places Kennedy's career in a historical perspective, and observes how Kennedy's personal life has affected his political performance. The Senator has dealt with his infamous legacy, struggled to overcome the Chappaquiddick incident, and handled spectacular failures as well as many truimphs. He's one of the few old-fashioned liberals who has held the Democratic Party to its principles, and is a hero to many. This is a unique, enormously readable chronicle of one of the most fascinating political figures of our time.