WASHINGTON — Congressional leaders Wednesday presented former Kansas Sen. Bob Dole with the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest distinction awarded by Congress.
President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, House Speaker Paul Ryan, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi were among those who praised Dole’s service to the Senate.
“Home was where Bob Dole learned the classic American grit. He knows about grit,” Trump said.
“Because of how faithfully he had fulfilled that first oath, Bob Dole could no longer raise his right hand, but he wasn’t done serving his country,” McConnell said. “So he walked into the statehouse, raised his left hand, and began the next chapter in a life filled with patriotic sacrifice and public service.”
In a political environment characterized by partisanship, the leaders praised Dole for his efforts to work across the aisle, particularly on the Americans with Disabilities Act.
“Little of great consequence is accomplished by any legislator alone. High achievement is a joint effort, especially with leadership like yours, Bob,” Vermont Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy said.
The award, honoring Dole’s “service to the nation as a soldier, legislator, and statesman,” was approved on Sept. 15, 2017.
Dole led Senate Republicans as the majority and minority leader for nine years and chaired the Republican National Committee.