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W. Willard Wirtz dies at 98; Labor secretary under Kennedy and Johnson
W. Willard Wirtz dies at 98; Labor secretary under Kennedy and Johnson

W. Willard Wirtz, the former U.S. Labor secretary who was the last surviving member of President John F. Kennedy's cabinet and who broke publicly with President Lyndon B. Johnson over Vietnam, died Saturday of natural causes at his home in Washington, his son Philip said. He was 98. Wirtz left a Chicago law firm to join the Kennedy administration as undersecretary of Labor in 1961. Kennedy promoted him to the top job in 1962 after naming Labor Secretary Arthur J. Goldberg to the Supreme Court. Wirtz continued in the post after Johnson succeeded Kennedy in 1963 and stayed on until Johnson completed his term in January 1969. As secretary, Wirtz advocated economic policies to maximize...

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