Ernest Lundeen (August 4, 1878 – August 31, 1940) was an American lawyer and politician who served as a U.S. Representative and later as a U.S. Senator from Minnesota. A controversial figure in American politics, Lundeen was known for his [[populism]] ideology and [[isolationist]] views, as well as his opposition to President [[Franklin D. Roosevelt]]'s policies in [[The New Deal]]. Born in Beresford, South Dakota, Lundeen grew up in Minnesota, where his family moved when he was a child. He attended the University of Minnesota and later earned a law degree from George Washington University Law School in Washington, D.C. After completing his education, Lundeen returned to Minnesota and established a legal practice in Minneapolis. ## Political career Lundeen entered politics as a member of the Minnesota House of Representatives, serving from 1915 to 1917. In 1916, he ran for the U.S. [[House of Representatives]] as a member of the Nonpartisan League, a populist political organization that advocated for the interests of farmers and laborers. Lundeen was elected to the U.S. House, where he served from 1917 to 1919. After his term in Congress, Lundeen continued to be involved in Minnesota politics, making several unsuccessful bids for various offices, including governor and U.S. Senator. In 1932, he was elected to the Minnesota House of Representatives again, serving until 1934. In 1936, Lundeen was elected to the U.S. [[Senate]] as a member of the Farmer-Labor Party, a political party that represented the interests of farmers and laborers in Minnesota. As a Senator, Lundeen was a vocal critic of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal policies, arguing that they were too costly and did not provide enough direct relief to those in need. He was also an ardent isolationist and opposed U.S. involvement in foreign conflicts. ### Involvement with the AFC During his time as a Senator, Lundeen was involved with the [[America First Committee (AFC)]], an isolationist organization that opposed U.S. involvement in World War II that had a membership that included individuals with pro-German sympathies. His involvement with the AFC raised eyebrows, particularly because the committee was accused of disseminating German [propaganda]( to influence American public opinion against entering the war. Lundeen was one of the key figures in Congress who used his platform to echo some of the AFC's talking points, which were often aligned with German interests. The Senator's activities drew the attention of the [[FBI]], and he was under investigation for potentially violating the [Foreign Agents Registration Act]( The suspicion was that he might be acting, directly or indirectly, on behalf of the German government to sway Congressional opinion. However, Lundeen died in a plane crash in August 1940, and the investigation into his activities was never conclusively resolved. ## Death and legacy Ernest Lundeen's political career was cut short by his untimely death in the aforementioned plane crash on August 31, 1940. His death occurred during his re-election campaign, and he was succeeded in the Senate by Joseph H. Ball. Lundeen's legacy is marked by his populist and [[isolationist]] views, and his involvement with the [[America First Committee (AFC)]], as well as his opposition to the New Deal. Although his tenure in the U.S. [[Senate]] was relatively brief, his advocacy for the interests of farmers and laborers and his critique of federal intervention in the economy remain notable aspects of his political career.