Frank Moss (politician)

Frank Moss (politician)

Infobox Officeholder
name=Frank E. Moss

jr/sr=United States Senator
term_start=January 3, 1959
term_end=January 3, 1977
predecessor=Arthur V. Watkins
successor=Orrin Hatch
birthdate=September 23, 1911
birthplace=Salt Lake City, Utah
deathdate=death date and age|2003|1|29|1911|9|23
deathplace=Salt Lake City, Utah
spouse=Phyllis Hart
alma_mater=University of Utah
George Washington University Law School

Frank Edward Moss (September 23, 1911 – January 29, 2003) was a moderate Democratic United States Senator from Utah. He represented Utah in the United States Senate from 1959 until 1977.

Moss chaired the Consumer Subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee where he sponsored a measure requiring detailed labeling on cigarette packages noting the health hazards of smoking and banning tobacco advertising on radio and television. He also sponsored the Consumer Product Warranty and Guarantee Act (Moss-Magnuson Act), the Toy Safety Act, the Product Safety Act, and the Poison Prevention Packaging Act.

Early life, marriage, and descendants

Moss was the youngest of seven children of James and Maude Nixon Moss. He married Phyllis Hart on June 201934 who died February 6 2007. They had four children, Marilyn Moss Armstrong, Frank Edward Moss, Jr., Brian Hart Moss and Gordon James Moss, who later gave Frank and Phyllis 14 grandchildren.


Moss graduated from Salt Lake City's Granite High School in 1929, from the University of Utah in 1933, and from the George Washington University Law School in 1937.


Moss worked on the legal staff of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission from 1937 to 1939. He became a law clerk to Utah Supreme Court Justice James H. Wolfe in 1939. Moss was elected a judge of Salt Lake City's Municipal Court in 1940. He was on the Judge Advocate General's staff of the U.S. Army Air Corps in England during World War II. After the war Moss was reelected a Salt Lake City judge. In 1950 he was elected Salt Lake County Attorney was reelected in 1954.

He ran unsuccessfully in 1956 for the Democratic nomination for Governor of Utah. In 1958, Moss ran for the U.S. Senate against two-term incumbent Arthur V. Watkins, a close ally of both the Eisenhower administration and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (see also Mormon), and also against J. Bracken Lee, a non-Mormon and former two-term Utah governor (1949-57), who was running as an independent after losing to Watkins in the Republican primary. The Republican vote was split in the general election, largely over local dissatisfaction with Watkins' having chaired the committee that censured Senator Joseph McCarthy, and Moss won election with less than 40 percent of the vote. Moss was elected to a second term in 1964, defeating Brigham Young University President Ernest L. Wilkinson. He was elected to a third term in 1970 defeating four-term Congressman Laurence Burton. He gained national prominence with regard to environmental, consumer, and health care issues. Moss became an expert on water issues and wrote "The Water Crisis" in 1967. He worked to secure additional national parks for Utah and started important investigations into the care of the elderly in nursing and retirement homes, and into physicians' abuses of the federal Medicaid program. He was also Chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Aeronautical and Space Sciences from 1973 to 1977.

Moss ran for a fourth term unsuccessfully in 1976 against Orrin Hatch, afterwards returning to the practice of law in Washington, D.C. and Salt Lake City. As of 2008, Moss is the last Democrat to represent Utah in the Senate.

External links

* [,FRANK.html Frank Moss at the Utah History Encyclopedia]

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