Washington Reacts to the Passing of Former Senator George McGovern
There is new reaction out of Washington on the passing of former Senator George McGovern. The 1972 Democratic presidential nominee, died at the age of 90 after a short stay in a South Dakota hospice, after what his family termed a "combination of medical conditions."
Statement from President Obama on the death of George McGovern:
"George McGovern dedicated his life to serving the country he loved. He signed up to fight in World War II, and became a decorated bomber pilot over the battlefields of Europe. When the people of South Dakota sent him to Washington, this hero of war became a champion for peace. And after his career in Congress, he became a leading voice in the fight against hunger. George was a statesman of great conscience and conviction, and Michelle and I share our thoughts and prayers with his family."
Statement by Vice President Biden:
"Jill and I are profoundly saddened to hear about George McGovern’s passing. I was honored to serve with him, to know him, and to call him a friend.
"George believed deeply in public service. It defined him as a Senator and as a man. And he never stopped serving for his entire life – whether it was his courage in World War II, his time in Congress, or his fight to eliminate hunger at home and abroad.
Above all, George McGovern was a generous, kind, honorable man. He will be missed, and our thoughts and prayers are with his family today."
Senator John Kerry made the following statement:
"George McGovern was a voice of clarity and conviction at a time when America needed it most. He spoke to many of us who opposed the war but loved our country, because he was the genuine article, a soft-spoken, decent and gentle man who lived a remarkable life with humility, a decorated bomber pilot who never bragged about his own heroism, even as he ran into the buzzsaw of the negative and destructive politics that marked the Watergate era. He never stopped caring about things like peace, hunger, poverty, and fairness, whether they were in political fashion or not, and history will record, to paraphrase the old saying, that George McGovern may not have been President, but George McGovern was right."
Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement:
“Senator George McGovern was a proud public servant and a humble man of great character. In Congress, he stood for America’s farming families and our middle class, and on behalf of peace. As our nominee for President, he strongly spoke out against the war in Vietnam and he was a proud voice for Democratic values, and indeed, American values. Throughout his lifetime, he led on behalf of progress, compassion, and generosity.
“George McGovern once said that after he had passed away, he wanted people to say, ‘He did the best he could to end hunger in this country and the world.’ Indeed, he did. He was a humanitarian with a tactical touch, and he saved the lives of many at home and abroad.
“I hope it is a comfort to the many who loved George McGovern, especially his children and grandchildren, that so many grieve his loss and are praying for them in this sad time.”
For more on George McGovern, watch Bret Baier's reporting on his life and career: