Who Will Pick Up The Mantle?



On Saturday, August 26th, I visited the George W. Bush Presidential Library in Dallas, TX.  Although I didn’t vote for George Bush I felt compelled to visit his library.  I recalled that I did not agree with all of his political decisions (I also didn’t agree with all of Barack Obama’s political decisions) but I never felt the distrust or disdain I feel for the 45th president. I was filled with a strange sense of peace and nostalgia as toured the library.


I remembered Laura Bush’s reading initiatives as I walked.  I remembered No Child Left Behind as a good faith (but failed in my opinion) effort to reform our broken school system. I remember the President’s faith-based initiatives.  I remembered the strong leadership President Bush exhibited after the September 11th terrorist attacks and how the country was united. I was filled with joy as I saw pictures of Presidents Carter, H. W. Bush, Clinton, W. Bush, and Obama smiling together.


In some ways, that library visit prepared me for the news of the death of Senator John McCain.


Taken from former Vice President Joe Biden’s eulogy for his friend, John McCain, in Phoenix.

“I was thinking this week about why John’s death hit the country so hard,” Biden said, before adding, “I think it’s because they knew that John believed so deeply and so passionately in the soul of America.”

“John’s story is the American story, grounded in respect and decency, basic fairness, the intolerance for the abuse of power,” Biden said.


When I first pondered why the death of John McCain impacted me so deeply I was a bit confused.  I have never voted for John McCain.  I do, however, respect his service to America and his commitment to humanity. In a country consumed by division and intolerance, McCain crossed party lines to do what he thought best for the American people. He chose country over party with integrity, boldness, and pride.  He fought for America even as he was fighting the battle of his life. How can I not admire and respect that? Even in his death, McCain continued to unite a divided United States and for that I am grateful.


Many Americans feel additional sadness as we wonder who will pick up the mantle.  I continue to be hopeful.

Today, however, I want to send my sincere gratitude and condolences to the McCain family as they mourn the death of their loved one.

Thank you, Mr. McCain, for a life well lived and a job well done!


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