Coverdell: A Tribute to a Senator
July 25, 2000
Mr. Speaker, I guess it is not a secret, Paul Coverdell and I were
about as different as night and day. But vastly different paths
in life led us both to serve in the Georgia legislature and then
on to Congress so that we could work together on behalf of the people
of the great State of Georgia. And when it came to the interests
of the people of Georgia, we often saw eye to eye.
I want to send all of my deepest and most heartfelt condolences
to the Coverdell family and to all the people who knew and loved
Paul Coverdell .
Immediately after the 1996 election, when I had been redistricted
and had a vastly changed district and we were able to pull out a
victory in a very close race, Paul Coverdell and I got together
and decided that we needed to build bridges with each other so that
we could do the work that the people of Georgia sent us both to
Our first project together resulted in about $20 million being
protected on the Senate side for my constituents who live in and
about the environs of Peach Tree De Kalb Airport.
Paul Coverdell 's latest project that we all were working on was
a veterans cemetery for our Georgia veterans.
But more than anything else, I have to say that I am struck by
the finality of death and the incomplete way many of us in public
life lead our lives. We are so busy, we are rushing here and rushing
there and going to meetings and going here and going there and always,
always, always in a rush and too busy to appreciate the people around
us, too busy to stop and say `I love you,' too busy to stop and
say `I thank you' to the people who make a difference in our lives.
This past weekend, I was looking at the Coverdell report on television;
and now I am standing here today sending condolences to Paul Coverdell
I want to thank the gentleman from Georgia (Mr. Lewis), the dean
of our delegation, for providing us this resolution so that we can
pay our respects to our senior Senator. I want to thank all of the
people who are responsible for all of us being here serving our
people of our State.
I would like to thank my colleagues, who, through difficult times,
have stood beside me in particular. And perhaps I have not said
thank you appropriately enough, but I want to say thank you today.
I want to say thank you to my Georgia delegation members. Because
we do not see eye to eye on a lot of issues and we do not even meet
as often as we probably should, but I do not think there is a single
issue that will benefit the people of our State that we do not come
together and work on.
And then finally, I would like to thank the Coverdell family for
sharing their leader with the people of our State and the people
of our country for about 30 years of public service.