tv Senators Grassley and Harkin on Bipartisanship CSPAN November 25, 2014 7:40pm-8:01pm EST
the trip being postponed is nothing more than a scheduling issue. the secretary would like to get that trip back on the schedule. i will take one more. ukraine -- is there any change in the u.s. policy provoked -- for providing only nonlethal -- >> the question presupposes that there is an official line being drawn at nonlethal, david. nothing has changed about nonlethal assistance that we continue to provide to ukrainian armed forces and security forces. we continue to evaluate all ukrainian requests for military aid and assistance. right now, focus remains on nonlethal. >> [indiscernible] >> we continue to focus on nonlethal assistance to the ukraine. >> no decision has been made on
providing legal assistance? >> we continue to be focused on nonlethal assistance to the ukraine. thanks, everybody. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] democrat tom harkin is retiring after three decades in the u.s. senate. we will having interview with tom harkin in about 20 minutes. his fellow senator, chuck grassley, who earlier this month gave a farewell speech to senator harkin. mr. president, i rise today to celebrate the 75th birthday of my friend and longtime colleague, from our home state of iowa, senator tom harkin. ,s you know, mr. president senator harkin will be retiring
from public office in just a few weeks. at the end of the 113th congress, senator harkin will then close a chapter on public service that spans more than a half-century, including four decades in congress. he also served 27 years in the united states navy and u.s. naval reserves. 10 years in the house of representatives. and 30 years here in the united states senate. i think anybody looking at that would say that is a remarkable and distinguished record of public service. after 40 years of representing , my friendongress tom will soon leave behind the halls of the u.s. capitol. he will also leave behind a legacy of fiery floor speeches, passionately delivered on behalf of individuals with disabilities
. also for iowa farmers, also for the elderly, also for child laborers, and for many causes such aschampioned, early childhood education, nutrition and wellness, conservation of renewable energy, and the environment. and lots of others, but those are things that everybody knows he has worked on. throughout the years, tom and i have served side-by-side in washington for the good of our home state. for three terms, we worked together in the u.s. house of representatives. senate our in the shared commitment to give rural america voice at the policymaking table was solved. years, we worked together in the agriculture
committee, looking out for the millions of americans who choose to work and earn a living in rural america. we worked together to advocate for infrastructure and investment, access to health care, housing technology and transportation. for the last three decades, we have served alongside one another here in this distinguished body, the united states senate. an institution that both of us hold near and dear to our hearts . although some of our silver-tonk critics over the years may have described tom's views as those of a bleeding heart liberal or mine mischaracterized as that of a coldhearted conservative, we both, tom and i, no that our hearts have always been in the wrong -- right place.
neither one of us was born with . silver spoon in our mouths and we learned early on to appreciate the work ethic of our parents and grandparents. each of us raise our families with the hopes that our children and ran children would achieve the promise of america's prosperity and grow up to enjoy the pursuit of happiness. u.s. senators, we have worked alive the dream of hard-working iowa families. now, of course, it is true we had vastly different views on the government's influence on ladder of opportunity. weever, we've all -- wholeheartedly agree it is an honor and privilege to serve the people of our state. for some reason, our respective
reelections every six years actually confounded legal observers. many could not seem to square the notion that iowans would continue to elect two u.s. senators from opposite sides of the political spectrum for the decades.- three so, mr. president, to explain, i think i do not have to. because it is widely understood that iowans are not casual political observers. our electorate takes pride in first inng, and it is the nation of political caucuses. we have certainly given iowa choicei'm night and day between these two u.s. senators. so while we may not see eye to eye on politics and ideology, we eye when to i -- eye to
it came to working for iowa's best interest. though our voting records may reflect night and day positions on some public policies, you would not see the light of day between us when we work together on matters that are most important to iowans. including but not limited to natural disasters, such as the tremendous floods of 1990 he and two dozen eight. farmers in agriculture -- recovering from farm crises. renewable energies and infrastructures, that are our mutual interest. we have enjoyed welcoming economic development leaders and constituents to the nation's capital. between the famous steak dinner the steakshington and
fry, there is no doubt. tom will miss staking out islands to discuss policy -- iowans to discuss policy. i have no doubt my colleague will continue to champion the causes for which she has devoted a lifetime of service. i have no doubt that he is going senate whatt of the he has pursued in the senate. to his credit, my colleague's legacy reflects the priorities that he set out to achieve decades ago. to make a difference for those on the downside. so, mr. president, my wife barbara and this senator extend our warmest wishes to tom and
his wife ruth, and the entire harkin family. nextu start life's chapter. i see my colleague is here, so i can look at him. nextu start life's chapter, may you enjoy the blessings of heart and home, health and happiness. old tom is retiring from public office. but i am confident he is not retiring from the public influence. from one constituent to another, i thank you for your lifetime of public service, and i wish you good luck and godspeed. i yield the floor. >> mr. president. >> the senator from iowa. president, first let me thank my friend and colleague for his characteristically -- lifetime characteristic of him
-- being very gracious and very generous in his remarks. grassley and i have served together since 1974. i like to tell people that in 1974, that was a big wave of democrats that came in. they called us the watergate babies. we came in in a big way. one a lot of elections and things like that. year,t, in iowa that elected a u.s. democratic senator in every house seat. i think there were six at that time. six house seats all went democratic except for one. and that was the seat that chuck grassley one -- won. 1974.g the trend in
it is kind of a funny thing, chuck, i speak to my friend across the aisle here, that a lot of people this year said all you watergate babies are gone now. you and max baucus and chris dodd. on the house side, george miller, henry waxman. so this is the last of the watergate babies. and i said, no, there is one more. who is that, they say? a republican. my colleague from iowa, chuck is sort of the last man standing from the class of 1974. i think it is a tribute to senator grassley that, through thethese years, he has won hearts and minds of the people of iowa and been reelected. i became the senator before
did in 1981. i came in 1984. i like to think that really share in common bucking the trend a little. because in 1984, someone said harkin, you have to run for the senate because there will be a a democratic landslide here. so i ran. whoa, boy. it was just the opposite. reagan landslide here. what i was fortunate enough to win reelection. so the two of us share bucking the tide, so to speak, to get into office when we ran. it has been a great association through all these years. on my 75thhere today birthday, i guess when you are i have to bang emotions. one, i wonder where the years went and why they went so fast. sometimes i wish i could turn
the clock back and do it again. i guess the other emotion is my irish side. the irish have a saying that, any day you are on this side of the grass, it is a good day. i have made it this far. say sincein want to of time we took our oath office, i think was january 4 of 1975, we have served together in the house and senate. a lot of time on the same committee, agriculture committee, working a lot of different agriculture bills. i remember in the 1980's working on the credit bill. so many farmers were underwater. beene senator says, it has a great honor and privilege to represent the people of iowa. as he mentioned, we belong to different parties. we have different philosophies of approach. but i would like to think we
share a down to earth, common sense iowa way of looking at the world. iowans are not monolithic. they are not one philosophy or the other philosophy. sometimes, i find very conservative friends of mine will have a more liberal view of one thing, and i find liberals in iowa have a more conservative you of something else. iowa, as my friend said, they think a lot about these things. they take these things into consideration. iowapeople say, how can one who is conservative and someone who is liberal? is a commone strength that week's itself to the people of iowa, and so many ways where there is a cross confluence of a conservative approach and a liberal approach. again, i say to my friend, i
have valued his friendship and counsel through all these years, even though, again, as my friend said, we approach things from a different philosophical standpoint. that is fine, that is ok. we have never let a disagreement on philosophy ever be the last word between us. or the final word. anything like that. it is always, that is that. what is next? the one thing i appreciate my friend said is that, when it comes to iowa, do not find any daylight when it comes to disaster, what we can do for iowa. we have had a wonderful relationship through all these years. it is a relationship i have cherished very much. that they friend say say he is a coldhearted conservative and i'm a bleeding heart liberal. i want to second the record straight.
is not assley coldhearted conservative. here's a caring conservative. he cares deeply about people, the people of iowa too. and i hope i am not a bleeding heart liberal. i hope i am sort of a liberal that believes in individual responsibility. friend has been a very caring conservative through all these years. i think together, we have achieved important things for our state. economic development, world of element, agriculture. all these things we worked on for iowa. 25% ofght now produces the energy. that comes from wind energy and iowa. that is something we have worked on through all these years. again, people asked me about leaving the senate. it is my decision. agoid almost to been years
i was not running again -- two years ago i was not running again. i said, you will not hear me say bad things about the senate or denounce the senate. i love the senate. it is a great institution. we have a few bumps in the road once in a while, but that is to be expected when you are representing 300 million people in this country. but it is the friendships you form, the alliances, the working together. i have often said that as a progressive, i wanted to go this far this fast. the conservatives want to go this far this fast. but working together, you can make progress area you make progress. think that is what both senator grassley and i have worked together on, to try to make progress. but especially for the people of iowa. i thank him for his kind words.
thank you. -- i know on the senate floor, we are supposed to speak in the third person. i want to speak directly and say thank you, chuck grassley, or friendship, for counsel, for working together through all these years. i am going to miss that relationship in working on the senate floor. but i will be in iowa. i will be working with the harkin institute. i will be spending time on disability policies and advancing the cause of people with disabilities in some way, shape, or form. i do not know exactly how. in some way. just want to say this to my friend. i hope that, at some time, since this is a nonpartisan institute, we have a great board of
directors. the former chair of the iowa republican party is on the board of the harkin in the two. we want to keep it nonpartisan. i would like my friend to come -- perhapst and be lead a discussion sometime at the institute at drake university. i would be honored if my friend would do that sometime down the road. we can work it out or something like that. i think you would be well received. i think young people at drake need to hear the conservative side of the story, as well liberal side of the story. they need to have that kind of input. so i hope we can work that out. and let me say again that i know in the future you and your wonderful wife, barbara, wonderful person -- you and barbara and ruth and i will maintain friendships and maintain our connections as we move into the future.
in any way that we can work together for the benefit of iowans, let me know, and i will .e glad to be your lieutenant or something out there in the field sometime. but thank you very much for so many years of counsel and friendship and working together. thank you. tonight, c-span interviews retiring members of congress. in a few moments, we talked to senator tom harkin of iowa. after that, a conversation with congressman howard coble of north carolina. from chicago ideas week, a look at alternative ways to improve education. iner more than 35 years congress, iowa senator tom harkin is set to retire at the end of this year. senator harkin served in the u.s. house, representing iowa's fifth district from 1975 to 1984