Colleagues and friends in Georgia and nationwide remember Senator Johnny Isakson

Isakson, known for his bipartisanship, died overnight at age 76

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Johnny Isakson
Senator Johnny Isakson in 2017

Photograph by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

On Sunday morning, the family of Senator Johnny Isakson announced he had died overnight at age 76. Isakson, a Republican who was known for working on both sides of the political aisle and finding friends among both Republican and Democratic parties, was first elected to the Georgia House of Representatives in 1976, to the Georgia Senate in 1992, to the U.S. House in 1999, and to the U.S. Senate in 2004. In 2016, as he was running for re-election, he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease but continued his campaign and won in the fall. In December 2019, he resigned from the seat due to his declining health.

Isakson was popular and well-liked among both voters and his colleagues; he chaired two Senate committees in 2015. In an interview with Atlanta in 2016, he said of his bipartisanship, “If it’s only going to be your way or the highway, you’re never going to get anything done. If you’re willing to find common ground on 80 percent of an issue, then don’t lose it over the 20 percent where you can’t find it. That’s always been the way I’ve operated. It’s served me well.”

In 2019, as he retired, he told the AJC, “I just hope what everybody will do is look beyond the pettiness of today’s politics . . . to try and bring us back to some even keel, where we can disagree amicably and agree aptly and solve problems rather than create them.”

Below, here’s what some on social media—politicians, local leaders, reporters, and local organizations—had to say about Isakson’s life.

https://twitter.com/cobbgop/status/1472610788451966976?s=20

https://twitter.com/MonicaKPearson/status/1472591297789763584?s=20

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