Despite being called the least electable man in America by John F. Kennedy for his many odd habits and beliefs, Pell proved a durable politician.
... Often considered by his opponents to be soft or easygoing, Pell demonstrated his effectiveness as a campaigner. During his first race, when he was accused of carpetbagging, Pell ran newspaper ads featuring a photo of his grand-uncle Duncan Pell, who had served as Lieutenant Governor in the 1860s, thus demonstrating Pell's ties to the state.
Pell was known for out of the ordinary beliefs and behaviors, including wearing threadbare suits, using public transportation and purchasing low-end used automobiles despite his wealth, and interest in the paranormal. He also wore his father's belt as a memento, despite the fact that Herbert Pell was stouter than the rail-thin Claiborne Pell, requiring Claiborne Pell to wrap the belt around his waist twice to make it fit.