Ex-Senate Majority Leader Dole gets Congressional Gold Medal
Former Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole knew the art of the deal before President Donald Trump published the 1987 book of the same name.
The two shared a stage under the Capitol dome Wednesday as Dole, 94, accepted Congress’ highest civilian honor, the Congressional Gold Medal, for his World War II service and decades of work in the House and Senate. Trump, meanwhile, was mired in a pitched budget battle that threatened to end in a government shutdown at week’s end.
The president nonetheless saluted Dole as “a patriot” and gave tribute to Dole’s struggle as a veteran who worked his way back from a grievous shoulder wound he suffered in Italy.
“He knows about grit,” said Trump.
But it was Dole’s penchant for working across the aisle that earned him his latest award, according to the legislation.
“Bob Dole was known for his ability to work across the aisle and embrace practical bipartisanship,” reads the legislation Trump signed in September. Some of the award’s 300 recipients include George Washington and Mother Teresa, according to the Congressional Research Service.
Dole reached for the White House multiple times – as Gerald Ford’s running mate in 1976, in Republican presidential primaries of 1980 and 1988, and finally as the GOP’s nominee in 1996. He lost in an Electoral College landslide to Democrat Bill Clinton.