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Oral History Project

Richard A. Arenberg Staff to Senators Paul E. Tsongas, George J. Mitchell, and Carl Levin (1975–2009)

Photo of Richard Arenberg

Richard Arenberg came to Washington in 1975 to serve as legislative director for Representative Paul Tsongas. In 1978 he helped Tsongas win an upset election to the Senate, defeating the popular Massachusetts senator Edward Brooke. When Senator Tsongas chose not to run for reelection in 1984, Arenberg joined the staff of Maine senator George Mitchell. In 1987, he became Mitchell's staff member on the Select Senate Iran-Contra Committee. In his spare time, Arenberg helped Senator Mitchell and Senator William Cohen to write their account of the investigation, Men of Zeal . Arenberg went on to become Mitchell's chief of staff and special assistant for national security affairs. When Mitchell left the Senate, Arenberg became legislative director and deputy chief of staff to Senator Carl Levin. In this oral history interview, Richard Arenberg shares his memories of the senators for whom he worked and the landmark legislation they struggled to enact.


Scholarly citation: "Richard A. Arenberg: Staff to Senators Paul Tsongas, George Mitchell, and Carl Levin, 1975–2009" Oral History Interviews, Senate Historical Office, Washington, D.C.

Disclaimer: The Senate Historical Office has a strong commitment to oral history as an important part of its efforts to document institutional change over time. Oral histories are a natural component to historical research and enhance the archival holdings of the Senate and its members. Oral histories represent the personal recollections and opinions of the interviewees, however, and should not be considered as the official views or opinions of the U.S. Senate, of the Senate Historical Office, or of other senators and/or staff members. The transcripts of these oral histories are made available by the Senate Historical Office as a public service.