Skip to comments.George and Ted's detente; War views aside, former president hails Kennedy for public service
Posted on 11/07/2003 6:50:23 PM PST by Brian S
George and Ted's detente War views aside, former president hails Kennedy for public service
08:34 PM CST on Friday, November 7, 2003
By ROBERT T. GARRETT / The Dallas Morning News
COLLEGE STATION, Texas Former President George Bush and U.S. Sen. Edward M. Kennedy tiptoed around the subject of the war in Iraq on which they disagree strongly during an improbable political cease-fire and love feast in Aggieland Friday night.
The occasion was the awarding of the third annual George Bush Award for Excellence in Public Service to Mr. Kennedy, D-Mass.
As he introduced Mr. Kennedy to an audience of 2,500 people at Rudder Auditorium, the elder Bush joked about criticisms the senator had hurled his way, including a few made on the eve of the first Persian Gulf War in early 1991. As he spoke, Mr. Kennedy stood up from his chair and pretended he was leaving the stage the crowd loved it.
However, Mr. Bush grew somber as he briefly referred to Mr. Kennedy's Sept. 18 accusation that his son, the incumbent president, was "bribing" other nations to commit troops and other resources to help rebuild war-torn Iraq.
"As a father, let me say attacks upset me a great deal more today than they did when I was myself in the crosshairs," he said. "It hurts more when it's your kid."
But the former president said "tough criticism goes with the territory."
He recalled that he had "lobbed more than my fair share of attacks at the senator. ... When you want to fire up a Republican crowd, give them a little red meat, you know. Nothing works quite like jumping on Ted Kennedy."
A few people booed when Mr. Kennedy was introduced. One man heckled him as he began his lecture, shouting, "You're hurting America."
But the senator ignored him and plunged into his 30-minute address, fully a third of which was devoted to praising the Bush family for public service.
Mr. Kennedy appeared to charm the crowd with several self-deprecating jokes about how unpopular he is in Texas.
On a more serious note, he said Americans should tolerate dissenting views about how to conduct the war on terror both from fellow citizens and other nations.
"Vigorous public debate is the only path to progress and the surest route to reconciling the differences that divide us," Mr. Kennedy said.
The war on terror is still in its infancy, he said.
"A new world order is still being born. We did not have all the answers at the start of the Cold War, either. ... Those successful policies emerged from a state of profound confusion."
Mr. Bush, who personally selected the senator for the award, said he was a worthy political adversary who in 41 years in the Senate "has waged a purposeful battle to improve the human condition."
"There were times when we were at each other's political throats," Mr. Bush recalled. "But at the end of the day, we are Americans who love our country and want the very best for it."
Mr. Kennedy responded, "on the fundamental values that unite us as Americans, Houston and Boston are not so far apart."
Several young people held "Viva Kennedy" placards outside the auditorium. About 50 people, including a man dressed up to look like the senator, staged a protest of his campus appearance. It was organized by the A&M chapter of the Young Conservatives of Texas.
Before his lecture, Mr. Kennedy toured the Bush Presidential Library with his wife, Victoria Reggie Kennedy, and her parents; some of his children; his niece Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg and her husband; three of his sisters, former U.S. Ambassador to Ireland Jean Kennedy, Pat Lawford and Eunice Shriver; and his sister-in-law, Ethel Kennedy, widow of Robert Kennedy.
Former first lady Barbara Bush, who had chided Mr. Kennedy a few days ago for speaking out "rather indiscriminately" about her son's handling of Iraq, joined her husband in welcoming him to the library.
The elder Bushes were the only members of their family to attend the events honoring Mr. Kennedy.
Retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Brent Scowcroft, who served as national security adviser to former Presidents Bush and Gerald Ford, read the award's citation at a dinner attended by about 225 people.
The citation said Mr. Kennedy, 71, "has earned widespread respect from political friend and foe alike as a tenacious and eloquent voice for furthering his beliefs."
It singled out for praise, however, only two of the Democrat's pet projects "his work to encourage more young Americans to enter public service" and his collaboration with the elder Bush in passing the Americans With Disabilities Act.
Previous recipients of the award were former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl.
Mr. Kennedy will return to Texas on Dec. 12 appearing before a more like-minded audience: He will be the keynote speaker for the Texas Civil Rights Project's annual banquet in Austin.
Sometimes, often times,lately, the question What the hell are they thinking? comes to mind.
Folks tend to shy away from Manichean type politicians, who are perceived as demonizing opponents. That was one of Clinton's secrets of success. He had the light touch.
Oh yes, its been "most effective" with the Kennedy Klan...indeed.
Spare us the drivel, should you be so kind.
Portion of Weedon Loop to close for bridge repairs
Eagle staff report
A portion of Weedon Loop will be closed to through traffic starting Monday because of construction, the Brazos County Road and Bridge Department has announced.
The section under construction will be a bridge structure located about 1.5 miles from the intersection of Weedon Loop and Hardy Weedon Road.
County workers will be replacing the bridge decking.
It does with me as well. Not too long ago I saw some ceremony honoring Ronald Reagan. Lott and Kennedy each spoke of him, with Nancy in the audience. Lott came across as stiff and emotionless. Kennedy, on the other hand, told several stories about Reagan and did so with the kind of affection that made you smile.
I don't like Kennedy at all, but I don't forget that night when he spoke of Reagan. It showed me a different side.
But 32% of Americans are registered as Democrats. 31% of us are registered as Republicans. The rest of our voters fall all over the spectrum.
Needless to say, if our appeal was limited to merely that 31% of our fellow like-minded right-wingers, we wouldn't be winning very many elections (and it would be puppets of the Clintons running the entire War on Terror show worldwide right now).
The Bush's have class, style, and political savvy, on the other hand. They have extended at least the 2nd olive branch to the Kennedy's (undeniably a powerful political family). One olive branch was the Education Bill. This civic award is the 2nd such goodwill gesture, and just as I approved of President Reagan extending a goodwill gesture to Gorbachav during the Cold war, so too do I applaud this passing of the peace pipe.
And I can afford to be magnanimous. Sans the lies and spin of the left-wing news media, our ideas, principles, and policies will clearly triumph over the Left whenever there is a level playing field.
So I welcome civilized debate rather than the treasonous rabble found in the latest Senate Intelligence Committee memo. If we can swing Ben Nelson, Ted Kennedy, Braux, and other such Senators to condemn out-of-bounds attacks and tricks (and somehow achieve a more level playing field), then I have full faith that our ideas will win in fair, open, and honest debate (something that the Left clearly fears as indicated by their zest to mischaracterize the Iraq War, our economy, forest fire policy, etc.).
And that's what today was. This was an olive branch. It was a gesture aimed at achieving civil discourse in the future, rather than resorting to civil war in the present.
Your mileage may vary, and no doubt does. I stand by my point of view on this one however.
We won't win elections by awarding the worst trash in the country good housekeeping seals of approval and thereby telling the people they should vote for them.
The first sing of class and stature is to avoid contact with, and recognition of, trash and degeneracy. The American people would greatly benefit from that model. If Bush had any class he wouldn't even appear on the same stage with the Kennedys.
Please, Freepers... help me with this uncertainty:
Is"PUKE" the correct exclamation in this absurd case ???
He's not out of politics. He's campaigning for Kennedy.
Actually...I think you are very close to the "facts on the ground", at least from this "keyboard commando's" vantage point.
Fear not however, in the end...we will out man them and overwhelm with our mass! :)
Nah, look who we're talking about. A murderous slime Kennedy.
Don't look now, but we just banned Partial Birth Abortion. We're building our national anti-missile defense systems this very moment in California and Alaska. We've killed the International Criminal Court, neutered the UN, and deep-sixed the Kyoto Global Warming Treaty.
Our right-wing agenda is sailing through, and we're gaining in the voter registration rolls every day. Next week starts the 24/7 filibusters (with a first try 30 hour test) to ram our judicial nominees through the Senate approval process. We've fully funded our Iraq, Afghanistan, and Liberia missions and rebuilding. We've given our military two pay raises in a row. We've passed at least two major income tax cuts and jump-started our economy.
We've won the House, the Senate, the Presidency, most state legislatures, and 29 out of 50 governorships (including the 4 most populous states of New York, California, Texas, and Florida). We've got private school choice vouchers and faith-based charity funding up on the agenda for next year, too. Our energy Bill may even pass through oil drilling in the ANWR.
Sheesh man, look around! We are destroying the Dems, and yet we are doing it so masterfully that they can't even call us bullies in their own left-wing press.
Hey, anybody want to spend another $9 million to make an anti-Reagan film?! I don't think so! Anyone want to try to roll back our state Concealed Carry Weapon laws?! Go ahead, make our day!
It's a thing of beauty when you stop to watch it in all of its glory. We've got Bush 1 giving Teddy Kennedy a civic award, for crying out loud! How can the liberal media fault that?? We are the compassionate Party. What can the Dems point to in the way of their efforts to show class back to us?! They've got Jack s#!+.
We've gone from being dead even in the voter registration rolls in Florida back in 2000 to up by 6% this year. Americans like what they are seeing from us. They like our leadership, our ideas, and our compassion.
Being even marginally cordial to Kennedy and other leftists is like not swatting a mosquito. It doesn't fly off in gratitude. It just digs in deeper ans sucks more blood.
Just ask Anita.
Bush never had a base. The only thing he ever had was riding Reagan's coat tails. He blew that away.
Quite simple -- conservatives have scruples and values. GB went back on the most solemn value conservatives hold dear -- taxes.
Liberals have no value system -- they just want to "feel good." Absent that, they want to block the conservatives since values are something a leftist cannot condone. Thus the Teddy and Clintoon re-election phenomena.
This does NOT mean I agree with the way conservatives turned on Bush Sr. But at least we have consistency.
Close, but no cigar. Pedophiles DO like children !!!
Calling Sen Kennedy a public servant who "has waged a purposeful battle to improve the human condition." is like describing a "pedophile" as someone who "pedals a bicycle on a single file line"!!! ;-))
Man Exposes Himself On A&M Campus
Five different victims at various locations on the Texas A&M campus report an encounter with a motorist who is exposing his genitals to people.
Everybody has scruples and values. Just ask them.
GB went back on the most solemn value conservatives hold dear -- taxes.
That is no excuse for 8 years of the Clintons....so far. If you think so, then you have no scruples and values.
Liberals have no value system...
This does NOT mean I agree with the way conservatives turned on Bush Sr.
They stabbed all of us in the back.
But at least we have consistency.
Tooth paste has consistency.
Not as unpopular as his brother unfortunately.
The last one down wins.
Place your bet.
Alas, I wish I could agree...
Then I think about that education bill GW handed Teddy and then I realize I'm fooling myself. But hey, a million here, a billion there... who's counting anymore?
My word! you called me a name. That's a good substitute for analysis.
But you are right. I find the Bushs disgusting for the sort of stupid antics Georgr the First pulled here.
Kudos to you Southack ! As much as I hate fat teddy and his sorry ways, you make excellent and well-thought out points.
As they say, at the end of the day the independent voter will decide who gets in office. Folks like me vote straight ticket GOP, and the 'RATS usually vote for 'RATS (many 'RATS split their ticket), but it's those Independent voters that make the difference. They examine the events and then look at both sides of the aisle and vote accordingly. What they've seen lately is a bunch 'RATS that have NO plan and can only offer Class Warfare/Divide Amerika rhetoric hate and spew. GWB has contributed a lot to the success and gains the GOP has made since he was elected in 2000, imho.
Thank you for your comments on this thread ! ...
It's not even a case of "glass half-full" any more. Yah, we have the judge issue, but when you get Al Sharpton---AL SHARPTON!---calling for an up or down vote on a judicial candidate, you are making real progress. Not that he's "coming over to our side," but that even he recognizes the huge damage this is doing to the Dems' positions (not to mention the judicial process, which even the Dems may need down the line!)
Even the editorialists are reluctantly admitting that the GOP is on a tremendous roll. Of course they are politicians, and like all pols try to spend money. But the good news is that levy after levy fails when subjected to the voters; the tort-litigation approach on guns, lead paint, and fast foods has been pretty much stopped; so the bottom line is that sooner or later the legislators will have to cut. There will simply be no other option. We win.