tv Oral Histories Former U.S. Senator Bob Dole CSPAN October 17, 2021 9:51pm-11:04pm EDT
progress. >> my larger question is there a concern at the beginning of the bush presidency about how loyal a leader you were going to be? >> will bob dole try to torpedo bush and john towers came along about that time and a very good friend of mine. >> did he get a raw deal? >> he got a raw deal by people -- i won't name names but i know a couple people who had drinking problem speaking against him on the floor and sam was a really great guy but i thought he got into opposing john tower and they were good buddies but i later forgot it
all because we had a memorial service for tower at arlington, sam showed up. >> there are those who think there was a little of payback involved, that over the years tower had been a very bright guy. >> stiff collared, very bright, no small tower and he did have a problem. i'm not sure if it is as bad when it ended were started and all that, but i think that was the thing to convince the bush people -- i even wanted to bring tower into the senate, which you have a right to do, have him testify before the senators which is permitted under the rules and he declined.
i thought he could put sam in the eye and make a difference. he apparently didn't think, dignity i guess, kind of begging. we could have done it. >> the 90 budget deal had to have been -- >> donald reagan? >> 90 -- year. donald reagan -- no, no. >> he wasn't meant the white house yet. >> nick brady, secretary of the treasury. it was bush going back on his word on the read my lips, gingrich shot down the first deal and there was a second deal which i heard described as worse than the first deal in terms of spending. if there ever had been a time you were entitled to say i told
you so that would have been it. >> i was trying to tell the white house i was working with tom foley trying to work out something else, looks like a tax increase and it was about midnight as i remember and still talking to someone at the white house, we can make a better deal here. i don't remember what it was but bush said he had no choice, democrats ran the place and what are you going to do, got to have the money. he got it right too. never going to give it to him without a tax increase. but thought he never should have said that. read my lips. >> host: what are the challenges in passing the apa?
>> guest: we had a lot of conversations in the white house. we had a guy named boydingray in the white house. he was really a friend of people with disabilities. strong on civil rights. he was our go to guy in the white house. the old story of government interfering telling people, got to make the place accessible, we tried to use the term reasonable and cost and load it up. >> host: it came from the business community. >> through the white house constituency. bush bragged about it enough that it was a great day, 3000
people out there in wheelchairs, gurneys, and one of the leading disability advocates war his hat and passed away. quite a day. >> host: i assume among the disability advocates who wanted perfection. >> guest: they are not happy now. they want to do a lot of things that should be done. working with tom harkin trying to be helpful. some people just can't satisfy. very important legislation.
the new number of disabled, 20 million overall with some disabilities. if you are in a wheelchair or you are blind or paralysis or internal things that may not show. and bipartisan legislation too. >> the bush presidency, and couldn't take credit for, cleaning and clean water. never thought he was one of then.
and looking for deviations and a very awkward - the change it never happened. along with this guy scuttling the budget, donald reagan. >> did you -- one had the sense that bush was increasingly isolated, took a long time for the white house to wake up to the political danger they were in. >> guest: squandered up to 92% approval rating and went down to 30 or something and got nothing for it, on the domestic
front, the political front, just evaporated. they didn't use it. >> guest: did you try -- >> host: didn't listen to anything i remember. >> guest: i think it was 92%. and congress was ready to respond. victory, actually did something. very few casualties. one hundred. .. >> in the historical mission that he had done with the very
skillful hundred skillfully did at the end of the cold war. >> one thing the government trouble was the economy which is will know, bless quarter which he didn't get credit for and clinton the economy and bush had a good record as you said but when the economy is bad, nixon's always right, it's always bread-and-butter remember the letter that i had, from nixon and the economy is good, you will lose but in effect and it was but i think that was the big, and some people probably didn't really want. member the talk. does he really want to be reelected, he doesn't act like it. they fired sully and i never saw that i thought that he was working hard. we became very good friends and
i remember going down there, in 1992 and thought about not running again. now that i talked to him and he said let's talk about this. and i said you're still a young guy, law law law. and guess what, you ought to do it hit. >> we just think think about not running again. >> prostate cancer pretty and i didn't know it at the time and it was early. survival were excellent then wouldn't talk to the person about maybe it is time for me to move on. he said no no, it is not time. >> would have done must've thought about it hard motive you
have done these he can imagine you, i still find it hard to believe. [laughter] >> i never had an ace on the roof. i don't know i don't think really thought about what i would do but in 1992, i would still be young enough to have a little. 1968. >> that lee suggests that the absolute need to be. ninety-six. eighty-eight was the year and 96 i probably should not have been running. i never did understand it. question one in 1988. that was the year.
>> to dictators that you met with that one make sure we get this on the record because you had met with saddam hussein and what happened at the meeting. >> picked us up in one of his planes. there were five of us. while simpson, folklore anyway, read this letter from bush which in effect was saying be careful of israel. you get a little aggressive and strong ties with them and we want to continue and it was just a one page letter. we weren't getting the meeting. so of jordan putting a plug then when we got to egypt we got a call. a set of god these guys here and
i know this bob dole in all this stuff and you should speak to him so that's how it really happened. and we got there. the plane took us to as i remember a big hotel where he was there and surrounded by all these guys with machine guns. i remember we talked a lot about the good relationships and some of the stuff of buying from american like weeds and stuff like that we talked to him about the letter that we were presenting for president bush and i think it all simpson got in a few jokes. i doubt it. but then he suggested that we went on a helicopter ride and he
said the people love me and i will take you out of the countryside. says it will think i need to visit a minute and to his credit he said that no way were going to go in a helicopter with that guy. so we declined. there were some reported story that some previous delegation ended up mysteriously missing but anyway, he was i can't other than a nice pleasanton painting printed and this of course was before invasion and when that occurred, you went over. didn't you go over there pretty. >> going to kuwait but - >> before the liberation of kuwait. drama. there were several months when
others some point you visited the troops. >> that may have been, gap. but i think that was coined in the same trip and i did go over there with clinton but that was another time and that was of bosnia and nato think. yes, i did go with bush. yes. those thanksgiving pretty. >> in between the - >> there was a desert and there's lots of sand and he was pumping up the troops and yes. when was that, that was - >> in the fall of 90. the war began in january of 91. >> and later elizabeth we went with hillary and bill to visit the troops trade.
>> you also had an encounter. that was in nicaragua when he was in power pretty. >> as i recall, that was more of a confrontational meeting. not as bad as another but i met with him a couple times and he was well, he or we didn't understand him. i guess i was still there because we're trying to do something thousand joe biden was holding me. but he had the dining room there and we are in the next room and we were there for lunch it was about 11:00 o'clock we were there with the ambassador in about 11, after a long heated
discussion the dining room doors closed so we knew the meeting was over. the ortega meeting, one who went with me then rated but obviously we work starting ortega. was that in the reagan years, that must've been rated. >> that 85. >> the ages and all of the stuff in my good friend biden and other democrats, violently opposed. we stopped in honduras as well and el salvador. >> what you think reagan's actual rule because i've heard so many while everything one has a theory one of them actually is the someone said first of all,
bill casey mumbled and ronald reagan was death and i can imagine casey going in and mumbling something in reagan nodding his head. >> he said when i make a mistake, is abuse and that was the whole thing and he got away with it. so i don't know. i don't know if he knew what was happening. i think only north sort of a wildcard in the whole thing. it there's another theory, remember they made the switch, ronald reagan a lot of people believe that jim baker was still chief of staff instead of ronald reagan. >> well that is another possibility and i don't know why he would want to be chief of staff so that. i know nancy did not like it. >> will i think her judgment was pretty correct printed. >> while he would say things
like will not here into leaders or whatever countries, it would be right in the middle. but we always well she always like ronald ragan for some reason he doublecrossed us on the budget and i remember i think i told you this before that he came up with an exit with was champagne and chocolates and all of the stuff into the office. >> what was your first impression of bill clinton in the white house printed because a stories about you going down there more the story says that about the donuts. it. >> as first meeting coming in donuts at his place. it's always the donuts. the next meeting we had donuts in every meeting after that we had donuts grade at fatty very charming guy. i helped him out on nafta which i'm not sure as i look back on it, some things just never
happened. he had adverse biased rulings he would set up retired justices and bipartisan but anyway and i remember talking to him about monica lewinsky. and i told him what i thought he should do. get a letter signed by 34 senator saying no way going to convict and have it in your pocket. i think he would've accepted the peaceful new york times got a mission that it is something wrong. you can that would've been at and as it turned out to thank you one and the politics of it and i think the republicans knew that was not going anywhere.
and they were hell-bent to try to make it happen. those without a times you wish you were - bullet was always good to visit with him. the point of ginsberg and i think i'm probably repeating myself here but she would die down the hall from leslie khamenei said that he was going to do this and i want to get somebody close to bob dole and close my neighbor that was his way of kind of i don't agree with her. philosophy. the simple can you kind of moving along i said sure. and she did and we did and she had 96 votes. in the filibuster and then we
had prior next. when you him and we worked with him and he was a nice guy, he was a liberal but the constitution gives the president the right to qualified to make the appointment so he got 97 votes i think. dishes how much things have changed in 15 years. >> that is leads to a huge question and you know as we have been working on this and i thought 30 years ago would you look at north korea or go back to 76, two guys from the midwest republican party and midwest base and was conservative a kind of a mainstream conservative and economic conservative and i had a healthy skepticism about the government. it was not libertarian and it wasn't reflectively hostile and recognizes a lot of people need
help i can get help from anywhere else greatly similar open to that. they wanted to keep government out of the classroom and the bedroom and the whole generation in depression and world war ii were accustomed to sacrifice and amend as eisenhower famously said, you don't plunder future generations and that is your republican party and your conservatives. >> yes we are republicans pretty. >> and if you look at your career, mid- 70s to mid 90s, so most like you were chasing this caboose pretty. >> and then abortion popped up and 74 let's face it, dixon worried about that issue i don't think for even and i'm not sure and 76. and then it became big big issue and that sort of started
defining different groups in different parties in different whatever. that's what noise confounded me even in the reagan years that we would spend spend spend. i thought we would always balance the budget in old-time republicans and for each had 51 bills in one year. and suddenly, when it cut taxes and spending and you have a surplus. something that i never as an economist i never understood and others didn't understand. most people are funny the time, former from oklahoma a great guy, a moderate republican and conservative. we thought you were supposed to balance the budget like people dead and he didn't have the money, you did not spend it.
>> is almost immoral or at least unethical in areas to live within your means, and fifth. at least not far from it. >> is taken from the rich even will be goldberg was complaining the other day about the estate tax is are making headway pretty she's in pain 40 percent nice and avoid, that is what i like to hear. >> one of the cause was it to the republican party and the conservatism utah set aside. >> look what happened in 2006, we were spinning money faster than democrat. i think we are the world's record with stevens and don young and other people. and there were others who are just as bad or worse but that's a disease now in advance of big
bill nurse elise 2000 earmarked. i will say that we never had the got one little project, oh boy that is a big deal and i was the leader. it is all kind of changed. keep on piling it up rated. >> but i also sense and again you arrived at the top your field at the very time that - >> the field was leaving. [laughter] they kept changing the goalpost that's the best way to describe it, was on the 5-yard line and they moved it now was on 15-yard line and then they moved it again. >> that's brilliant for these cold cultural issues that redefines conservatism where the old conservatives said basically we mind our own business.
>> except for the farmers, they let the little subsidy out in kansas, letting for education, the big thing in my first house race because we don't have a lot of that we do math and science with the local people do in the school boards do it. and now dc has 50 percent dropouts in high school so i come to the point that there ought to be universal higher education some kind. like i school grade school and prequalified, known of college degree these days, i don't know what to do pretty. >> would've philosophically and
politically, pretty thank you so the right role for the government in terms of the culture. >> qualities to have a guy in the hardware store in kansas and he said i've got all of these hammers left over that he can sell now can you give me a program where i can get for these hammers that in itself like we are paying the farmers for the crops they don't raise all of this stuff. he can't win because he's right. on the other hand, you need some safety net because they are producing in the way the system works, the bigger producers get more of the money. and that's just the way it works. 10 percent of the producers get 90 percent of the money, will something that i think it is actually about 28 percent to 50 percent money.
we been paid out, and put together bipartisan farmville this last year there still paying farmers 18 sent a bushel government payment. when to be taken the money and putting it into energy or somewhere. but nothing but farmville is that we don't good nutrition programs because we are having a trouble passing the farmville i think in the 70 so we buttered it up with food stamps and we can school lunch and we get the city people to vote for it in the farm people to vote for it. i used to be the american farm
bureau federation was pretty much against subsidy except maybe with a call a loan program where he could borrow and have some money but at the price went up you can still make a profit. >> nancy about the healthcare package of the holidays and clinton presidency. >> sheila talk about it i told him if i had sheila burke to vote for and i would go for it pretty. >> but in fact it was an alternative instead of - >> he was or he had a lot of common sense. and more left but still a good republican and i think also
another conservative in the book was shaky that they getting close remember mental kept us and part of the recess getting a bill passed i think august 15 he finally gave up. my view the missus clinton came to see me and she was very nice a lot of us did not know why she would do this to is not accountable to anybody and she was not sworn into office. this was not trivia this was national healthcare and she was not accountable. is being done through the white house in the secret meetings so that all started off about way. the present knowing that his wife - but anyway we had
meetings and i think we met at least twice their people started meeting with sheila and remember meeting at the white house and we were already in the democrats and but we did not do enough of that printed pretty soon it got me their way or the highway and then the inspectors office came up with a chart. and finally lay down in the corner trying to help so that killed it. >> 1342 pages was that bill pretty. >> the chart was designed by somebody in our office who really caught on and we did that. anyway, he was telling me that i
think it was sheila, years and years ago we had will be called a three d bill, the dual in the danforth and bill and what sheila said, back in the 70s, that was pretty progressive stuff and it doesn't differ in many areas but some similarities of what we were doing back then when hillary is trying to do now because we had insurance pool, where poor people could not get insurance is of any had to take them. and some would only take a healthy people. i'm going to have to dig that out and take a look at those three d's. and look at all of the details so healthcare is a big issue, no question about it. >> clinton later on said that he realized he made a mistake a should've started off welfare reform and put healthcare higher
pretty. >> he vetoed it twice and then after my campaign for president that he signed it into the reform bill. >> will the misgivings a lot of his yes. >> and nafta as well and that was earlier in the union people did not like nafta and hillary was going to but first she was going to repeal it and now she's just going to modify it and i think bill told her way to minutes, that was one of my proud achievements. >> consensus was that clinton came into office and set up some unrealistic about what can be done. the main the problem with the healthcare plan among other things was they wanted 100 percent now and offered 95 percent and they said no, that is not good enough.
and he at least learned over time that we were pretty lucky to get 90 percent rated. >> we know reagan would've taken 70 and i think his first mistake was the first that he set up was a spending bill and that was david barb who blew the whistle and as republicans were all against it. and on the floor, thinking made a lot of promises two different constituencies in the campaigns in a money going here in many going here and really didn't creating jobs or anything it was just sort of a payoff and was defeated and then they started off 90 feet. in that defeat and i think they basically made a mistake, by not putting their arms around congress. have them down there once a week but charms run them and say come on and i think that's all were going to get back to where we
were, way back with gerald ford days when he intent, of course we didn't have that many horses in the house whose days, we were still a factor. it seemed like things got done. >> i must say he was very agreeable and it doesn't make sense to you that one reason 30 years ago that two parties that would be easier in some ways to work together 30 or years ago was because three or four years ago, each of the parties had liberals and conservatives and southerners and northerners. when you use before you you wanted to get something done from minnesota you work with russell and can develop personal relationships and in some ways
transcended ideology. so you developed a knack of compromising internally. to effectively up the work the minority. going to get anything done, the republicans reach out to the democrats. but that is true because of that is because you lofgren. if you didn't need 40 republicans generally you only needed one or two but i remember working on this because google came from states. i really didn't seem to be well we disagreed the goat out on the floor debate but we never called anybody names i don't think. will some did a couple of times. there are a couple of stupid things said. i thought is more civil pretty. >> while he made it clear and he
said your friendship proceeded 1976, at any time of the things that you worked on together and course the home free. sue met will back into japan, i lived there and i introduced him really. >> what you think it is different. i guess what i'm getting at is that for years of people safe need to have a liberal party in the conservative party will guess what, we have them and you parties that only have liberals and only have conservatives in are you happy with what you have pretty. >> will be to monitor as we have an new york times take care of one or two a year and we have susan collins and and 76 percent approval ratings and we have to spend a million dollars and she is in a tough race and johnson
and in new england just above new york times about wiped us out. but there's got to be somebody in the middle summer. and knowing that they don't have to be sort of moderate and liberals and conservatives. but straight down the line pretty. >> to think it's one reason that people outside of the city who are turned off or not ideologically driven and maybe don't pay much attention pretty. >> while i can tell it it's more difficult raising the money and for the republicans particularly because they don't have the sources. msi was listening to a democrat it was the michael. [inaudible]. and very good is talking about how the republicans could be in trouble because there volunteers showing up for the the
candidates because maybe hillary is nationally known and barack is you know, very charming guy and new face and fresh. but it kinda makes sense but even then, they are saying that the republicans way down to the convention and you're not going to fix somebody. [inaudible]. >> police makes for an exciting convention. for five different scenarios for the republicans within two for the democrats hillary or obama. the passed february 5th. >> going because there's also something here that people they want the parties to work together they want people to you know rise above their own ideological differences but what that means is to make a deal.
>> or get in. >> but then as you know, if you get stagnant the filmmaker, and legislature, to be a president or a leader and isn't that a little bit contradictory as people say they want one thing they don't really want pretty. >> they want leadership and they want somebody that they can look to and i think here, i don't agree with them weather pretty honest honest people are trying to get something done and that isn't always pending funny that somehow you measure what you are getting done. it is not always cutting taxes, there's other things going on as well. i think we are in for several years of this grid lock, really historic.
>> and in some ways you can see it from there, maybe obama gets elected and expectations will be awfully high. and if he tries to ratify them and on the other hand, a really strong democratic congress and, i mean, in his people are looking for leadership pretty. >> i talked to mitch mcconnell aside and he was there at the fundraiser for the party and he admitted that people are looking for change but he said if you like the change they got with pelosi at 24 percent or something and push 105 points to 36 or something but of course are trying to paint a rosy picture for next year on the senate side. >> was in a relationship with a second bush white house?
>> i just got a picture of president bush autographing remove autographed still doing good for america, the mission on veterans, not close but i waited pretty heavily in the va election and introduced general peak at the hearing along with another pretty there was a couple weeks ago. item have anything to ask him. and i met with hadley a couple of times and at the law firm and all the other people. we might be able to help so they have been good about getting the certain things measured.
letting bush, 11, is to talk to these veterans and, these guys who lost their legs and all of that stuff, he is great with them one-on-one. and this one guy, he lost his arm and he thinks bush is great and he had us down there three times in the last time he spent two hours just visiting with these different people space pretty hard to beat. >> is there such a thing is presidency being unlucky. [laughter] well history will have to judge that. and why the whole world thinks they have to have the wmds and they didn't and and was it worth it and we should bring in the republicans like colin powell and he is a great guy to talk to
him and 96 and i didn't ask you but i knew the answer would be that when up to his house and reception greeted me and it went into this little room and he said really notice tough and the economy is good but who knows what could happen. i said well and kinda wish me luck and in other words, don't ask me the question would you be my running mate. >> but what if you been your first choice. >> oh yes. they were ready for barack obama yet. as a grain of guy is was i thank you so much stronger than obama. and he was running for the polls in iowa. >> he had pretty i would say moderate conservative views. but you remember that at that convention when he talked about
affirmative action and he got some booze and if you had put them on your ticket, there would've been but you would've had a movement. >> and you get somebody like they wanted a black president but anyway, i was looking at and as somebody i thought was capable. >> that's interesting you never pick someone who might rival you or overshadow you read their own constituencies you known me. that is been made. >> why don't think you really i go out and take smarter people and you are but as long as you got pretty good political sense, may be much smarter in the field they are in, and that is what
you want. and i just thought that powell had a great touch with the market people, more than i had an eye can see him reaching out to the independence of the moderates. because clinton would pick them up and to me another one was on the list that it never talk to that was baynard, and scalia and all of the catholic votes rated. >> could you imagine how many times they would've said something that would have to be taken back in the new cycle. [laughter] >> will i said a few things myself. i was talking to writing what he wanted bring the missiles back and what was that quote. >> in five minutes we were watching the attack of the soviet union. [laughter] >> yes you we had in on the air pretty. >> but maybe he could get away with it.
lucky or whatever people. >> let's good point on bush and i think that is smart smart enough and think he made a basic mistake of not working more closely with congress because he came here as a conservative hand he got to be all politics and we against them and then the war in iraq just changed everything. and suddenly a focus on domestic programs and relationships with other countries and had to take a backseat rated wasn't much of a choice and look at the money we spent on education and so you can look at all of the different things that happen plus the loss of lives. >> work for you on the morning of 911 pretty. >> i just headed to walter reed, walked into the front door norman said mr. walker said did you hear about the plane flying
into the tower new york and i said no, because there's been a terrible accident and by the time of that all three, course the second plane and people were running all over the hospital getting mobilized and running to the pentagon and the whole place was in turmoil. >> and i have to get back, where were you on pearl harbor day pretty. >> i was in my fraternity in kansas on sunday morning wasn't and we were shocked, we were kids. and we could not believe it. >> did you sense that day or immediately thereafter and would change her life printed. >> turn thereafter because everybody started to sign up so i wasn't one of those i think there's a lot of these young guys joining the navy or the army everybody wanted to do something. and in fact, roosevelt was pretty well we didn't get in, we
weren't too anxious to get in. it. >> but the draft was passed by one vote pretty. >> wasn't rankin or somebody, a woman remember in utah or somewhere maybe in idaho or montana but once pearl harbor, the president went to the capitol and he was, well he was sort of a mentor of mine because he overcame disabilities and i remember the day and he died, i think april 12th, 1945. that was the day we are supposed have a big push in mid-to-late and we were all griefs stricken and often wonder what would happen if he would've just held on a few more days maybe i
would've been okay that's kind of selfish. >> you became a republican and he talked about the reasons you became a republican which suggests that your numbers rather than ideology, over the years, it's been very real republican and have or what is that develop around 30. >> a young guy named john wolf the county attorney in our little county and he was going to leave and i was in law school and he thought that i had to come back and run for that job. but before i did that i thought i would run for the state legislature and i think well i don't know who really got me in there probably john wolf got me interested in politics and then the law library library, my
students and running for office and wouldn't know anything about public law and three of us got elected. so that was all by accident. she does not more young people ought to be involved and she was wonderful lady. so four of us picked up the challenge and we did it. >> ike comes back the next year and there is overlap but i wonder if he was a hero of yours, it's always made it a lot easier to be a republican because dwight eisenhower was there. in june of 52 pretty. >> yes, i was there sitting in the rain and avoid eisenhower and people in kansas and a local paper, he was a moderate
republican. he coined the term and eisenhower was republican and you want to be in eisenhower publication be whatever or who the right winners for those days maybe taft i guess. but it sounded good to me, what little i knew about it. why not be an eisenhower republican and he was my hero. >> giver have a quote that you wish you could've take back pretty. >> yes lots of them if you're the leader subject about with some guy in office were lady just to show the good little support, back, god for boats or something yet have some of those. and i voted against the attorney general from georgia.
and i apologized to him for it because the secretary of transportation a black guy, bill: a great lawyer and a great guy, and a severe republican leader and you can't vote for this guy. i think i was one of 19. he endorsed me 96 in atlanta. so, regretted that because he won the race fair enough. just a good old southern gentleman. >> i think later on people had second thoughts when he was
nominated to supreme court because they think they realize that the politics had taken over. >> i voted for him but he was a bad nominee. >> while i did vote for floyd march with him and senator biden made a mistake on him, little petty things about $24 or something or little tiny things and there are long line of good family and i'm thinking of the other two that biden set up. >> mediocre people. >> on the bench but there was over 55 - 45. and we ended up with harry blackmun.
while was stevens. >> yes harry blackmun and lost his seat and 80. >> running mate for hillary. >> i'm sure this evidence everyone but you voted for something that was really for the constituents. and in retrospect you wish that you hadn't. many resisted that a lot. >> while i thought that the farm bill and all of that kind of stuff, really not pressure, you're from a farm state near on a committee you better vote for rent in those days we used to say okay guys that we guys work out the week program and
depending on the partier and then we will come back ten work on this together. and also from louisiana, there's never any partisanship. let's work this out. and it was a alternative minimum tax, 20 million who did not pay taxes the year before and it was not russell's idea. now we have this mess where you have 30 million people some of these great ideas come in fact to get it checked on final passage but i probably did this because russell wanted me to. he was a great legislature. he would get up in the senate floor that would be 50 amendments, 8:00 o'clock at night and he would just start taking them, yes, i will take it and i will take it and you knew
they weren't going anywhere and he would go to conference and out they go. but you get a press release back home. [laughter] >> without naming names, are there senators get into the place when they got up to speak. and conversely when someone gets up to speed, people really listen. >> i would say dirksen would always bring up you people and any died shortly after i came to the senate. but generally in closing to make, people would listen to robert byrd on appropriations or he didn't give you long history lesson for store you know the leaders and sometimes you would
ask people to come to the floor and we need to show support of the republican side and mitch would say we need to show support the voluntarily in their always urged to come. a lot of people in the got up to speak, that was a good time to go to the men's room or have lunch or maybe even take a vacation. >> has there ever been a situation where and family, the colleagues went to someone and said, look, the age for other reasons or the equivalent of an intervention. >> not giving the names but i never thought they were treated fairly.
and today he would not have a problem. and there are others who had bad drinking problems that had to be escorted off the floor from time to time. and i didn't serve liquor in my office because they wanted to get drunk, they were not going to do it in my office pretty good downtown or somewhere else and we didn't but we did serve coke or whatever. but put in the old days the leader's office would have drinks. >> to think television has changed that bring it to the senate might've had an impact. >> it might have yeah.
>> to think that's a good thing bringing television in. summa method the first, some people up there every day making a speech for people back in north dakota and i think overall is work pretty well. after several years, just kind of part of the deal. i don't think anybody really thinks about how big of the cspan audiences you want to know pretty. >> the only thing i know is that they have done statistics and printings this a supposedly in the course of the week between 30 and 40 million people. >> there is a big audience out there. i've not watched that closely in the senate no rio grande standards out there but there's always a couple in both parties and i remember several walking in and looking up at the press gallery to see if anybody has
written in the words and sometimes people come running out of the gallery and say ted kennedy or somebody. generally nobody came at the speeches work shorter and it was very nice pretty. >> to last things, one included you want to do is present and what was your presidency look like. >> i think more emphasis on a balanced budget and probably a little more emphasis on families and social programs in healthcare. and of course strong defense. i don't like taxes either. i would say a little right of
center but then again you gotta deal with congress. >> alive after the people number of people said that you know, he would've spent a lot of time in the help and he would've been sitting down. >> as i said before, bush and clinton both made mistake, great governors but in different place of their. and that's why gerald ford really 70 really knew the congress and got a lot of things done some work to good buddy and friends and sometimes politics you can separate the two and sometimes you can't. >> the last thing unfair
question but i have to ask you how would you like to be remembered. to think about that? >> the lot, as as i've said before, put on my tombstone veteran or something like that. because we do a lot of work with the veterans and still do every day doing something. and i think in yesterday for the hearing, henry, and another charity is ripping off these people and they're not even helping the veterans, millions and millions and billions of dollars in henry at the hearing yesterday. those kind of things are important to me. >> politicians always say i don't look back and i don't live
in the past at night look to the future. do you look back. >> i used to look back, used to dream about what i did wrong in 1996, and particularly and 88, that's when i really would lie awake at night and say what would i do wrong things i would feel like hopefully and 88 and also 96. i thought it would get there but it was not the same feeling. but anymore, i don't look back. in a great experience and you get to be 84 years old, you've only got so many days left of what i want to do, but i want to spend my tomorrow worrying about what happened back then and i want to worry about what will happen tomorrow. sue met life has been pretty good for you right pretty many
of them a lot and a memorial. >> made a lot of money a lot of family members who needed help and they were tired and we are making these great speeches that worked hard. and i told clayton i would tell the truth for 50000 and he said well tell them whatever you tell them for 300. [laughter] >> will you become the poster child, there is a whole generation of america, and don't think they think of you is fairly for the politics. it. >> i would spend to hours a day average because i have to write it out long handedness videos would type it. and they've either got a problem or they want to say thank you or i was on the honor flight and you were there to shake my hand or whatever and that's how
people know you. they don't) roberts. [laughter] i'll send it off to pat roberts. >> they write to me. some of them i do we don't have the staff got good va and dod end they kind of agreed to help us with this stuff and then make quite a few phone calls. this guy is 85 years old needs in the hospital and we would like to hear from you. nice little things, doesn't cost anything. >> with the contest that is that you had a lot of people who at one time, powerful people on the hill or elsewhere.
[inaudible]. >> it was not a form letter, is generally something that i scribbled out on a sticky pad. either that or put them on a phone list and some guy called yesterday from texas and billy somebody who was to come into politics any 30 years old and is iraqi veteran it and i've already got the stuff with the dallas county chairman and all of the 70 get into all of these little kind of things printed. >> there's people never get over the fact that there no longer and people's memories are pretty short. the shelf life and you have eaten that and i mean maybe because of the ads pretty. >> maybe i shouldn't say this but i said that what is the shelf life of a former chief of
protocol and he thought it just shot him. and it never ends. [laughter] but you are right, and you going to sit around thinking about how important you are, whatever. that is kind of a waste of time but it's kind of nice to have elizabeth involved it and i had only been on the hill since i left and 96, probably 20 times. i think i've taken people up to see about nine different senators, kennedy biden john warner, and people who i would introduce them part say i have a problem frank i don't get my lawn form involved.
and i talk to others about same thing. you do things like that and we don't lobby people. it is a we have to have this. did lobby months on an appropriation bill and it never happened but i decided i did not want to do that anymore, once was enough. dennis your friends to give $4 million for this client of ours. it is supposed to be helpful but i think it was.