Skip to comments.Bush signs bill honoring LBJ
Posted on 03/23/2007 4:55:08 PM PDT by SwinneySwitch
WASHINGTON Its front entrance now touts President Bush's education policy, but the Education Department headquarters will one day honor Lyndon Baines Johnson and his work to improve U.S. schools.
Bush signed legislation Friday naming the agency's offices after the follow Texan, with 17 members of the Johnson family looking on.
Johnson's children, Luci Baines Johnson and Lynda Bird Johnson Robb and their spouses, their children and grandchildren gathered at the Oval Office for the signing that was not open to reporters. First lady Laura Bush also attended.
Lady Bird Johnson, the former first lady, was unable to attend but listened from Texas through a conference call, said Rep. Gene Green, a Houston Democrat who sponsored the bill.
"This will be a fitting tribute to Lyndon who worked so hard to make life better for so many, and were he alive I can think of nothing that would please him more," she said in a statement.
She said her husband would want to be remembered as the "Education President."
"Education was at the heart of my father's career in public service. He felt that it was mankind's passport out of poverty and our greatest hope for tomorrow," said Luci Baines Johnson, the 36th president's daughter.
Johnson, a Democrat, served as president from 1963-69 and died in 1973. He signed dozens of education-related bills, including a 1964 law that established Head Start, the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, which provided assistance to underfunded school districts and the Higher Education Act of 1965.
"If every building in D.C. had no name and we could choose one to bear my father's, we couldn't have hoped for one that would reflect more who he was and what he tried to do," Luci Baines Johnson said.
Johnson attended the former Texas State Teachers College, now Texas State University in San Marcos, and taught for a year in Cotulla in South Texas. His experience teaching poor Mexican-American children in the town was considered a great influence on his policies.
Throughout the Bush administration, a red school house facade with "No Child Left Behind" the name of Bush's education legislation has stood at the education department's front entrance.
Green said he was uncertain when Johnson's name would be on the building and whether it would share billing with the red schoolhouse.
Rep. Mike McCaul, R-Austin, helped garner backing for the bill among Republicans.
"Any time you name a federal building after somebody you are enshrining a memory. Hopefully, when people walk by the building, future generations, and see the name Lyndon Baines Johnson, they will pick up the history books and read about him," said McCaul. Several Johnson family members, including Lady Bird, live in his district.
Lyndon Kyle Boozer, who said his mother Yolanda Garza Boozer was a secretary to Johnson, approached Green with the idea to honor Johnson two years ago. The bill was first introduced in 2003 but stalled in the then Republican-controlled Congress.
Despite his Texas ties, some in the state's delegation chose not to co-sponsors the bill. Twenty-five of the 32 House members from Texas, all 13 Democrats and 12 of the 19 Republicans, added their names to the bill.
Sens. Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn, both Texas Republicans, backed the bill in the Senate.
The bill is H.R. 584.
On the Net: To find legislation: http://thomas.loc.gov
Wonder if any of the Coke Stevenson family were invited?
Good Bill. LBJ was a nice guy.
LBJ was a total fraud.
Only a Boozer would think it's a good idea to honor LBJ.
This is home state loyalty, nothing more.
LBJ doesn't deserve to be honored. He was an even worse Presidente than Jimmy Carter.
Agreed - probably one of the most corrupt POTUS we have had (including his time in Congress).
I wish the president would quit referrering to himself as a Texan. He absolutely is not! He's a d#mn yankee!
Only worthwhile if tomorrow you start in on it with the wrecking balls.
I see President Bush let his bad self out again.
LOL but GWB is a "conservative"...
I agree with you.
Some here at FR may disagree and label Carter as the worst ever, but LBJ - IMHO - is the worst president ever.
Worse than Carter, worse than Clinton.
And that is saying something!
But yes, he was an arrogant and nasty crook. Not just to underlings, but his wife as well.
One thing all the Bush bashers here should remember is that he respects the office of the President and is not going to criticize former holders of the office.
Here are some of LBJ's dubious "achievements":
Dramatically changed immigration laws, making it much easier for third world immigrants and much harder for immigrants from similar cultures
Changed the accounting on the Federal budget, so that deficts are concealed until after they're spent
Stacked the courts with leftist judges
Of course, the Great Society
LBJ has been out of office for 40 years, and we still feel the impact of his errors.
He certainly seems to practice the LBJ fiscal conservatism model.
I'm not going to read into this that much. Bush respects the Presidency itself and those who served it. Plus, this is a little good old Texas back-slapping thrown in. His personal opinion of LBJ is probably 360 degrees of his public one.
There's a difference between respecting someone and honoring them.
As for the term "basher", if that means being equally critical of questionable actions regardless of an (R) or (D) after their name, guess that makes me one.
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