tv U.S. Senate Sen. Moran on Passing of Sen. Bob Dole CSPAN December 6, 2021 11:42pm-12:00am EST
saying free at last. well, now free at last. godspeed, my friend. you made a difference in my life. you made a difference in our country. your service and sacrifice will be celebrated for generations to come. a. >> madam president, it's an honor to be here this afternoon to address my colleagues in the senate and an honor that you sit in the chair as i do so as i pay tribute to the honorable senator bob dole. in church on sunday and christians were preparing for christmas only to learn during that church service, bob dole
had died. it's been the topic of conversation ever since. not that kind of curiosity conversation that sometimes you have when someone passes away, but that deep respect and concern, that care and appreciation for the life well lived. senator dole grew up down the road from where i grew up. i remember kind of the earliest conversation with my dad about world war ii experiences was that his mother was, as well as my grandmother, were on party lines. the conversation between my grandmother and missus dole was a terrible circumstance that her
son had experienced in the battlefields of italy. my dad served in world war ii and northern africa and italy, was in the neighborhood and eqrequest one neighbor to anoth, one partyline participant to another. do you think there is a new way to find out how bob is doing. so my earliest recollection and understanding of the life was as a soldier, a member of the army, the person that served in world war ii and was horrifically injured. my view is, and i do not know this, but having known bob dole and seeing the consequences of his life, what i think is true is that experience, the near-death experience and
expectation not to survive the endof the long road to recovery created in his mind at heart a different circumstance and result that had never happened. people talk about his life as a member of congress. he was elected to the house of representatives in 1960. i was asked over the weekend when did you meet bob dole and i can't remember the first instance, but he was my congressman and i was engaged in republican politics as a teenager. he was always there at every gathering and soi grew up in politics around him but never with other than a sense of this is someone we really respect.
in 1968, congressman bob dole became senator bob dole and his life into this body had a amazing achievements of the legislative battlefield. when people ask me what do you remember and what made bob dole bobw dole, my view is his servie to america in world war ii. i think it made him more aware of people who were struggling and people who have disabilities. i think he's all the challenges people around of the country thd as a result of their service. he saw the challenges people experienced in world war ii and
when we look at his legislative achievements we often think of at least three americans with disabilities act. food aid, what many people call the mcgovern dole bill that helps feed people around the world. and his service to other veterans. his work on this floor resulted in many americans and in fact many citizens of the world having a better shot at life. in my speech on the senate floor i recognized the circumstances.
the challenge that caused for me knowing that those footsteps might be they may never fit in those shoes. this drawer has his name sketched into it, and it's a reminder to me about those shoes left unfilled. when i get frustrated with this place, which is not infrequent, i will put on my running shoes and walked to the lincoln memorial. but in the last decade that allows me to not only go by the vietnam wall and come back by the memorial, but now i can stop
and pay my respects at the world war ii memorial that's because he cared about those he served with. bob dole demanded that there be a memorial to those who served in world war ii. he helped plan it and recruited volunteers. he helped raise the money. so today we have the chance, and i assumed this week we will be at the world war ii memorial empaying respects to all veteras but we will emphasize the service of bob dole who made that place to pay respect. i try to visit with every honor flight that comes to washington, d.c. and in the beginning days,
almost everyone that came was a world war ii veteran. my own dad got to see the honor built in the memorial built in his honor because bob dole made it c possible. my dad came here on an honor flight and bob dole was there that day just like he was at almost every circumstance in which veterans were coming to washington, d.c. particularly world war ii veterans, and bob dole didn't stand there for the glory of his service. he stood there to thank others who served. he was there not to take the podium or to be the public official, but to be the fellow soldier. lots of things we can commend and express our gratitude for what he did, but honoring
veterans he saw as a lifetime responsibility and opportunity. since veterans coming to the world w war ii memorial, didn't get to shake the hand of bob dole. finally, he became physically impossible to do that. but he was there at every opportunity for as long as he could. he served 36 years in congress, 79 of the 98 as a public servant of the nation in the military and in addition to the legislative accomplishments, he was a decent person.
he exhibited civility. he hadia warmth and no elected official,e no offense to my friend, no one could compete with his weight. my guess is that as an injured soldier, spending months in a bed in a va hospital, or incidentally, he shared the hospital with daniel in a way who was also gravely injured and later these two soldiers that survived battling and rehabilitation became fast friends, one a republican and one a democrat. the republican democrat thing didn't mean that much. it was the shared service, the sacrifice that these two world war ii heroes brought together and maintained that friendship.
bob dole exhibited that weight and i had so many people after the 1996 run for presidency. he appeared on shows in the evening on late night talk shows and hundreds of times he would say i've only seen that side of him. he had the capability of causing people to smile and it could take the edge out of a difficult circumstance. we are going to spend some time honoring him this week. i want to make certain that i use my opportunity that they've given me to express on their
wbehalf. not very many will be in washington, d.c., and not many people will be able to have the public eye and ear to express their thoughts. but even this weekend and throughout the time that he's been in office and at the time bob dole was no longer in office kansans have held him in the highest regard. they've appreciated his service and respect him even in disagreement. i've been at rooms even when he voted for the bill that raised taxes on financial institutions and a something to do with farmers and they wereit there to complain. but he had such stature that no oneng could complain very long about the vote he cast, especially when he explained you can't get everythingt you want here but we can make things better if we give a little here
to get a lot more there. a lesson for us today. so on behalf of all kansans, i express their care, love, sympathy and condolences to senator elizabeth dole, his wife, to robin, his daughter, to other family members, nieces and nephews.ho i also express condolences to all those who worked for senator dole and his office, whether it was the kansas office or the office of the majority or minority leader. there are so many people in washington, d.c. today and in fact i looked to see how many united states senators served with bob dole during his tenure that still served today. i urged senator leahy on the floor earlier this afternoon,
senator grassley and mcconnell, senator shelby, senatorns feinstein, senator inhofe and senator wyden all had the opportunity to serve with the senator from kansas, bob dole. i can't imagine that doesn't influence the way they do their work and look at the united states senate. but to those that serve in his office as members of the staff, and many of them have gone on through nominations and confirmations to become hugely important people in agencies, departments and bureaus across the government. his mentor ship lives on and of all the kids i there were inter, all the young men and women that worked f here, all the people tt were influenced to have a
different approach to the rest of the world, a little different attitude to people they might disagree with and a chance to bring the values that bob dole exhibited in his public life to more people across the nation. i don't know how to sum up but i'm sure i will have a few more opportunities this week to express the life of bob dole, to express the value of the life of bob dole. so, this afternoon, it's not a conclusion but it is an ending of these remarks i think senator dole for being a kansan with a lot ofom common sense. i thank him for his willingness to serve, to serve the nation,
put on the uniform and go through the experience of his injuries into rehabilitation, theth kansans that helped him through that experience. most of my life i've heard the story of bob dole's hometown of russell, kansas. again i grew up within 15 miles of russell. and upon his return from the va hospital to his hometown, the community rallied to the survival and success of his rehabilitation. the story of cigar boxes in the drugstore where he worked in high school, the businessmen, women, farmers and laborers, the workers that put nickels and dimes, a few dollars here and there into the cigar boxes around town to make sure bob dole he and his mom and dad havd the resources to recover.
maybe it takes us back to that e value of coming from a small town where people know each other and care about each other. or on the party line to worriedh mothers could have a conversation about their sons in service, but where a community knows the importance of respecting and helping those in need. so, to the people of russell and to the people across kansas, thank you for the manner in which you've treated and respected a man worthy of our respect. madam president, i yield the floor. >> i want to bring richard norton smith, longtime friend of the network, historian, author, the founding director of the institute for politics at the