CLEVELAND (WJW) — Jerry Springer, the legendary talk show host and former Cincinnati mayor and news anchor died Thursday at 79 after a brief illness, according to a statement from his family shared with multiple outlets.

While he’s best known for his tabloid talk show “Jerry Springer,” he was active in politics much of his adult life, especially in Ohio.

Springer ran unsuccessfully for Congress in 1970 before being elected to the Cincinnati city council in 1971.

Springer abruptly left his position in 1974, explaining that he admitted to the FBI that he had paid for prostitutes on two occasions during his time as councilman. As the Cincinnati Enquirer explains, Springer won back his council seat in 1975, then became mayor of Cincinnati in 1977. Five years later, he unsuccessfully ran for governor of Ohio.

Springer quickly bounced back politically, winning a council seat in 1975 and serving as mayor in 1977.

After leaving politics, Springer joined WLWT in Cincinnati as a news anchor and commentator. He and co-anchor Norma Rashid eventually helped build NBC affiliate WLWT-TV’s broadcast into the Cincinnati market’s top-rated news show.

The Jerry Springer Show aired on FOX 8 in the late 90s. In 1998, our own David Moss went behind the scenes of the show in Chicago and asked Springer what he thought made his show a ratings success.

“What makes the show work is the outrageousness of the guests and the enthusiasm of the audience. That combination. They don’t need me,” Springer said.

While he wasn’t an elected official, Springer still stayed involved in politics.

In July 2016, FOX 8’s Tracy McCool talked to Jerry Springer at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. She caught up with him at the Ohio Delegation breakfast, where he said he gave his thoughts on a Trump presidency.

During the interview, he said he was a reality TV star just like Trump and he knows that he is not qualified to be commander-in-chief. He also mentioned the importance of a female presidential nominee stepping into the spotlight.

“It’s like, wow, everything is possible. So I want a little bit of that moment, because 30 years from now, I promise, any issue that we’re arguing about, no one’s going to remember,” Spring told McCool. “What they will remember is that Hillary Clinton was on her way to becoming president of the United States of America. A brilliant woman. God bless us.”

Watch that interview below:

In 2017, Springer actually mulled a run for Ohio governor.

That year, he also led a rally and march in Cleveland on Labor Day to support unions and call for an increase in the minimum wage.

“If we are to continue to be a great and prosperous country, we need to raise wages for working people and give every worker the opportunity to join a Union,” said Springer, 73, in a news release. “We can all wave our American flags at the 7th evening stretch at every ballpark in the country, but the real way Americans can show their patriotism is by fighting for an economy and a government that helps working-class families get ahead.”