Saturday, May 23, 2015

The wisdom of Sen. Everett Dirksen

“When a member of the House moves over to the Senate,
            he raises the IQ of both bodies.”

U. S. Senator (R-IL)

It’s too bad we don’t have more of the Dirksen kind of pol in Washington today.

I’m not saying “The Wizard of Ooze” was my all-time favorite senator. In fact, he died before I became really politically aware, and my personal political convictions have changed more or less entirely since the Dirksen era.

The thing is, the high-profile senator from Illinois was a realistic, rather straight-talking politician who did a reasonable, fairly persistent imitation of caring about the vital interests of our nation and the public good.

Dirksen supported Roosevelt’s New Deal, the Civil Rights acts of the 1960s, the Vietnam War and organized prayer in public schools. He was a conservative on economic issues, but was generally considered to be in the “moderate” camp. Probably he would feel uncomfortable in a Republican caucus today.

I don’t mean to lionize Dirksen, he was a politician, he served in Congress for more than three decades, he was a crony and a log-roller.

He applied the lash sweetly with his quote about the IQ fallout of a House member moving to the 

He just forgot to mention that the opposite is also true.

Copyright © Richard Carl Subber 2015 All rights reserved.

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