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Va. senators join colleagues in mourning Byrd

Rosalind Helderman

Both of Virginia's senators today have released statements mourning the death of their colleague, West Virginia Sen. Robert Byrd, joining much of the political establishment in noting the passing of the longest-serving member of Congress in U.S. history.

Sen Mark Warner (D) said:

I knew of Senator Robert Byrd and his work long before I ever met him.

Senator Byrd understood that for the Senate to work effectively, members have to be willing to work together in a bipartisan way, treat their colleagues with trust and mutual respect, and always put the interests of the nation first.

In a Senate career that spanned more than a half-century, I believe it can be said that few people understood this institution any better than Robert Byrd.

Sen. Jim Webb (D) said:

The impact Senator Byrd has had on the institution of the Senate will be felt for many years. He was an ardent defender of the traditions of this body, and of its rightful place in the constitutional balance. He was also a force in ensuring that the views of all its members received fair treatment, whether he agreed with them or not. During the few years we served together in the Senate, I was proud to stand with him in fighting for a better way of life among the people of Appalachia, who found in Senator Byrd a steadfast advocate. He was an exceptional legislator and statesman, and he will be greatly missed.

By Rosalind Helderman  |  June 28, 2010; 4:42 PM ET
Categories:  James Webb , Mark Warner , Rosalind Helderman  
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"I shall never fight in the armed forces with a Negro by my side... Rather I should die a thousand times, and see Old Glory trampled in the dirt never to rise again, than to see this beloved land of ours become degraded by race mongrels, a throwback to the blackest specimen from the wilds."

— Robert C. Byrd, in a letter to Sen. Theodore Bilbo (D-MS), 1944

Posted by: WashingtonTimesisBetter | June 28, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

What if this man who Filibustered against the civil rights act of 1964, who was a Kleagle and Gran Cyclops of the Ku Klux Kan was a Republican?

If what did Trent Lott was wrong to laud Strom Thurmond are not these Senators also wrong to laud a Klansman, or is overt racism only wrong if done by a Republican?

Posted by: WashingtonTimesisBetter | June 28, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Now Jim Webb can stand up and take Byrd's place as the Senate's preeminent white trash racist.

Posted by: JTR555 | June 29, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

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