Washington, D.C. - Speaker Nancy Pelosi spoke on the House floor this evening to honor House Armed Services Committee Chairman Ike Skelton of Missouri. Below are the Speaker's remarks.
“Mr. Speaker, I rise to sing the praises of a great man--Ike Skelton. We all heard his beautiful address to us, and in it, he started with where his heart is: with his family, expressing his love for his family, his appreciation to his staff, his respect for his colleagues, his admiration for our great country.
“I am so pleased that we have been joined by Senator Claire McCaskill, coming over from the Senate side to make the respect for Mr. Skelton bicameral. And that we are joined by Congresswoman Jo Ann Emerson, making that support bipartisan, as well as by so many Members of the Missouri delegation. And that you, Mr. Carnahan, are in the Chair for Mr. Skelton's presentation. I know we will be hearing from our distinguished Majority Leader, Mr. Hoyer, but it is important to note that Emanuel Cleaver of Missouri, Lacy Clay of Missouri is here. And other Members are here--Chairman Miller, chairs, colleagues, new Members, senior Members. That's how Mr. Skelton is regarded and respected in the Congress of the United States.
“He made his speech the way he served in Congress--surrounded by friends, admired by all on both sides of the aisle, on both sides of the Capitol. He began by talking about his family, and he ended by talking about our men and women in uniform which are like sons and daughters to him. He has always taught us that, as President Kennedy said, ‘We will pay any price, bear any burden.' Mr. Skelton said to us over and over again, as he did this evening, that protecting the American people is our first responsibility. Our young men and women in uniform make us the home of the brave and the land of the free. And we can never forget that. They have no greater champion in the Congress than the Chairman of the Armed Services Committee.
“I know I speak for every person in this chamber when I say: Mr. Skelton, ‘Thank you for your leadership for our country.' It is an honor to call you ‘colleague.' Thank you, Mr. Skelton.”