Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Ted Kennedy Dead At 77: The Lion Has Left The House

Ted Kennedy Dead At 77: The Lion Has Left The House

President Obama To Deliver Eulogy At Kennedy's Funeral

"Integrity Is The Lifeblood Of Democracy. Deceit Is A Poison In Its Veins."
-Edward Kennedy-

Sen. Edward M. Kennedy Dies

By Martha Angle and Seth Stern, CQ Staff

Edward M. Kennedy , D-Mass., the liberal “lion of the Senate” and youngest of three brothers who helped define American politics for more than half a century, ,died late Tuesday of complications from a brain tumor. He was 77.

Born into wealth and privilege, he was the unflagging champion of the disadvantaged, the sick and the disabled. He had an unshakable belief in the ability — and responsibility — of government to level the playing field for the millions of Americans less fortunate than the storied Kennedy clan.

Ed. --

Michelle and I were heartbroken to learn this morning of the death of our dear friend, Senator Ted Kennedy.

For nearly five decades, virtually every major piece of legislation to advance the civil rights, health and economic well-being of the American people bore his name and resulted from his efforts.

His ideas and ideals are stamped on scores of laws and reflected in millions of lives -- in seniors who know new dignity; in families that know new opportunity; in children who know education's promise; and in all who can pursue their dream in an America that is more equal and more just, including me.

In the United States Senate, I can think of no one who engendered greater respect or affection from members of both sides of the aisle. His seriousness of purpose was perpetually matched by humility, warmth and good cheer. He battled passionately on the Senate floor for the causes that he held dear, and yet still maintained warm friendships across party lines. And that's one reason he became not only one of the greatest senators of our time, but one of the most accomplished Americans ever to serve our democracy.

I personally valued his wise counsel in the Senate, where, regardless of the swirl of events, he always had time for a new colleague. I cherished his confidence and momentous support in my race for the Presidency. And even as he waged a valiant struggle with a mortal illness, I've benefited as President from his encouragement and wisdom.

His fight gave us the opportunity we were denied when his brothers John and Robert were taken from us: the blessing of time to say thank you and goodbye. The outpouring of love, gratitude and fond memories to which we've all borne witness is a testament to the way this singular figure in American history touched so many lives.

For America, he was a defender of a dream. For his family, he was a guardian. Our hearts and prayers go out to them today -- to his wonderful wife, Vicki, his children Ted Jr., Patrick and Kara, his grandchildren and his extended family.

Today, our country mourns. We say goodbye to a friend and a true leader who challenged us all to live out our noblest values. And we give thanks for his memory, which inspires us still.


President Barack Obama

Cover Photo By My Earliest Mentor Ted Dully

Senator Edward Kennedy Dies — Our Nation Mourns 26 August 2009 — by Stuart Hutchison

Kennedy, the liberal lion, dead at 77

By DAVID ROGERS | 8/26/09 3:52 PM

Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, battling for health-care reform and against cancer, died late Tuesday night.

Remembering Ted Kennedy

By MARTIN KADY II & TIM GRIEVE | 8/26/09 2:27 PM

Family, colleagues pay tribute.

Dems: Win one for Teddy on reform


Insiders think impact will be felt in legislative math.

Not all Kennedy critics hold fire

By MICHAEL CALDERONE | 8/26/09 3:27 PM

For decades, he was a major bogeyman for the right. Not every foe is ready to forgive and forget.

A tale of two Teddys

By ANDIE COLLER | 8/26/09 3:54 PM

From his ascent in the Senate to the losses of his brothers, Kennedy's life has had ups and downs.

PHOTOS: Ted Kennedy, 1932-2009

By ARIEL ALEXOVICH | 8/26/09 2:09 PM

Kennedy's place in history

By ERIKA LOVLEY | 8/26/09 2:15 PM

Historians across the nation struggled Wednesday to take measure of the senior senator from Mass.

The Kennedy speeches

By KATHRYN MCGARR | 8/26/09 3:06 PM

Here are excerpts from his most notable speeches.

CNN first with Kennedy news

By MICHAEL CALDERONE | 8/26/09 11:16 AM

By the time President Obama got the Kennedy news, all three cable networks were running the story.

Kennedy memoir hits shelves in Sept.

By PIA CATTON | 8/26/09 12:58 PM

“True Compass” joins the rarified ranks of posthumously published books by political figures.

Funeral in Boston, burial at Arlington

By MARTIN KADY II | 8/26/09 3:02 PM

He'll lie in repose at the John F. Kennedy Library before his funeral is held at a Catholic church in Boston.

Obama pays tribute to Kennedy

By NIA-MALIKA HENDERSON | 8/26/09 10:47 AM

Speaking from Martha's Vineyard, Obama says of Kennedy: "The extraordinary good that he did lives on."

Bush calls Mrs. Kennedy

By MIKE ALLEN | 8/26/09 1:16 PM

Former president expresses his and Laura Bush’s condolences, best wishes and prayers, an aide says.

Clinton marks Kennedy's death

By POLITICO STAFF | 8/26/09 12:49 PM

The former president calls Ted Kennedy "one of the most influential leaders of our time."

VIDEO: Pols react to Kennedy's death

By POLITICO STAFF | 8/26/09 2:53 PM

Biden talking Kennedy with Lauer

The vice president is sitting down with NBC to talk about the passing away of his good friend.

The Arena

Tribute: Edward M. Kennedy

Sen. Bernie Sanders: Sen. Kennedy was "an extremely warm and caring human being whose public service was a brilliant reflection of his love and devotion."

VIDEO: Kennedy's life and legacy

By POLITICO STAFF | 8/26/09 2:05 PM

The Nation Has Lost A Great Leader And I Have Lost A Friend.


Tribute to Robert F. Kennedy

On June 8, 1968 at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City, Senator Kennedy eulogized his brother Robert “as a good and decent man, who saw wrong and tried to right it, saw suffering and tried to heal it, saw war and tried to stop it.”

Senator Kennedy’s Tribute to Robert F. Kennedy

June 8, 1968 | St. Patrick's Cathedral, New York, N.Y.

-Original Text as Distributed to the Press

-Download an MP3 audio file

Your Eminences, Your Excellencies, Mr. President:

On behalf of Mrs. Kennedy, her children, the parents and sisters of Robert Kennedy, I want to express what we feel to those who mourn with us today in this Cathedral and around the world.

We loved him as a brother, and as a father, and as a son. From his parents, and from his older brothers and sisters -- Joe and Kathleen and Jack -- he received an inspiration which he passed on to all of us. He gave us strength in time of trouble, wisdom in time of uncertainty, and sharing in time of happiness. He will always be by our side.

Love is not an easy feeling to put into words. Nor is loyalty, or trust, or joy. But he was all of these. He loved life completely and he lived it intensely.

A few years back, Robert Kennedy wrote some words about his own father which expresses [sic] the way we in his family felt about him. He said of what his father meant to him, and I quote: "What it really all adds up to is love -- not love as it is described with such facility in popular magazines, but the kind of love that is affection and respect, order and encouragement, and support. Our awareness of this was an incalculable source of strength, and because real love is something unselfish and involves sacrifice and giving, we could not help but profit from it." And he continued, "Beneath it all, he has tried to engender a social conscience. There were wrongs which needed attention. There were people who were poor and needed help. And we have a responsibility to them and to this country. Through no virtues and accomplishments of our own, we have been fortunate enough to be born in the United States under the most comfortable conditions. We, therefore, have a responsibility to others who are less well off."

That is what Robert Kennedy was given. What he leaves to us is what he said, what he did, and what he stood for. A speech he made to the young people of South Africa on their Day of Affirmation in 1966 sums it up the best, and I would like to read it now:

"There is discrimination in this world and slavery and slaughter and starvation. Governments repress their people; millions are trapped in poverty while the nation grows rich and wealth is lavished on armaments everywhere. These are differing evils, but they are the common works of man. They reflect the imperfection of human justice, the inadequacy of human compassion, our lack of sensibility towards the suffering of our fellows. But we can perhaps remember -- even if only for a time -- that those who live with us are our brothers; that they share with us the same short moment of life; that they seek -- as we do -- nothing but the chance to live out their lives in purpose and happiness, winning what satisfaction and fulfillment they can.

Surely, this bond of common faith, this bond of common goal, can begin to teach us something. Surely, we can learn, at least, to look at those around us as fellow men. And surely we can begin to work a little harder to bind up the wounds among us and to become in our own hearts brothers and countrymen once again. The answer is to rely on youth -- not a time of life but a state of mind, a temper of the will, a quality of imagination, a predominance of courage over timidity, of the appetite for adventure over the love of ease. The cruelties and obstacles of this swiftly changing planet will not yield to the obsolete dogmas and outworn slogans. They cannot be moved by those who cling to a present that is already dying, who prefer the illusion of security to the excitement and danger that come with even the most peaceful progress.

It is a revolutionary world we live in, and this generation at home and around the world has had thrust upon it a greater burden of responsibility than any generation that has ever lived. Some believe there is nothing one man or one woman can do against the enormous array of the world's ills. Yet many of the world's great movements, of thought and action, have flowed from the work of a single man. A young monk began the Protestant reformation; a young general extended an empire from Macedonia to the borders of the earth; a young woman reclaimed the territory of France; and it was a young Italian explorer who discovered the New World, and the 32 year-old Thomas Jefferson who [pro]claimed that "all men are created equal."

These men moved the world, and so can we all. Few will have the greatness to bend history itself, but each of us can work to change a small portion of events, and in the total of all those acts will be written the history of this generation. *It is from numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped.* Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.

Few are willing to brave the disapproval of their fellows, the censure of their colleagues, the wrath of their society. Moral courage is a rarer commodity than bravery in battle or great intelligence. Yet it is the one essential, vital quality for those who seek to change a world that yields most painfully to change. And I believe that in this generation those with the courage to enter the moral conflict will find themselves with companions in every corner of the globe.

For the fortunate among us, there is the temptation to follow the easy and familiar paths of personal ambition and financial success so grandly spread before those who enjoy the privilege of education. But that is not the road history has marked out for us. Like it or not, we live in times of danger and uncertainty. But they are also more open to the creative energy of men than any other time in history. All of us will ultimately be judged, and as the years pass we will surely judge ourselves on the effort we have contributed to building a new world society and the extent to which our ideals and goals have shaped that event.

*The future does not belong to those who are content with today, apathetic toward common problems and their fellow man alike, timid and fearful in the face of new ideas and bold projects. Rather it will belong to those who can blend vision, reason and courage in a personal commitment to the ideals and great enterprises of American Society.* Our future may lie beyond our vision, but it is not completely beyond our control. It is the shaping impulse of America that neither fate nor nature nor the irresistible tides of history, but the work of our own hands, matched to reason and principle, that will determine our destiny. There is pride in that, even arrogance, but there is also experience and truth. In any event, it is the only way we can live."

That is the way he lived. That is what he leaves us.

My brother need not be idealized, or enlarged in death beyond what he was in life; to be remembered simply as a good and decent man, who saw wrong and tried to right it, saw suffering and tried to heal it, saw war and tried to stop it.

Those of us who loved him and who take him to his rest today, pray that what he was to us and what he wished for others will some day come to pass for all the world.

As he said many times, in many parts of this nation, to those he touched and who sought to touch him:

"Some men see things as they are and say why.
I dream things that never were and say why not."

Ted’s Eulogy For Bobby: A Moment Of Greatness

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