MIKE GRAVEL is an American politician who was a senator for Alaska from 1969 to 1981. In 1971, he effectively declassified the Pentagon Papers, which showed the US had secretly enlarged the scope of its actions in the Vietnam War, by reading them into the Senate record. A proponent of direct democracy, he ran for president in 2008 and 2020. He used his first campaign to draw attention to his National Citizens Initiative for Democracy, a piece of legislation that would allow US citizens – independent of representative government – to propose and vote on laws and amendments. In 2020 he aimed to push the debate in the Democratic primary to the left and promote anti-interventionist policies.