the obligation to look back with a sense of indebtedness to Mo for this,
Mo used his assignment on the Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs to make himself the House's most prolific author of environmental legislation. However, that, too, was sometimes a difficult and frustrating process. The House passed three strip-mining bills, and twice failed to override vetoes, until the bill finally become law in 1977. It took 4 years to enact legislation to divide Alaska lands between development and wilderness areas.
In recent years he helped enact the Nuclear Waste Act, a major wilderness act and many others.
It will be difficult to adequately express the obligation of the country for the contributions of Mo Udall in the environmenal field. Literally hundreds and hundreds of millions of acres in the United States will be preserved for generations ahead, because of the efforts of Mo Udall.
He overcame personal handicaps. As a young boy, he lost an eye. Despite that handicap, he excelled in athletics. He overcame defeat and disappointment on many occasions in the House to be one of the finest and most effective Members to serve in this body.
His physical health is turning out to be the most difficult of all of his struggles. Except for that, he would continue for many, many years to grace this institution and to ennoble our public life.
He leaves here with the gratitude of not only those on this side, but all those who have had an opportunity to serve with him. He leaves with the respect and admiration of the constituents he served so well in a 30-year period.
He has above his desk that famous quotation from Will Rogers which says, "We are here for just a spell and then pass on. So get a few laughs and do the best you can. Live your life so that whenever you lose, you are ahead."
After 30 years, Mo Udall leaves this institution in honorable retirement and very much ahead. And Mr. Speaker, the country and the House is far ahead, too.
We pay our respects tonight not only to Mo but to the family, his wife, Norma, his brother, and his children. They have worked in recent weeks to see that Mo's service concluded with the respect and admiration of all of the citizens he has represented and all of those with whom he served.
I hope in this small way tonight
we are contributing to that recognition. His service was so great it cannot
be summed up in a few words or a few speeches. But I think it will be summed
up by the legacy that he leaves behind: A fairer society, a more honorable
nation, a physical inheritance of great wealth and beauty to future
and most of all, a symbol of grace and humor and honor that was and is
Mo Udall's testament to this House.
Mr. KOSTMAYER. Mr. Speaker, I yield to my friend, the gentleman from Connecticut (Mr. Gejdenson).
Mr. GEJDENSON. Mr. Speaker, I am privileged to join the Speaker and so many of my colleagues.
There are not many people, especially today, but I guess ever who are assessed as heroes in the American Congress. Many of us are only known in our own districts or in a small segment of society that has an interest in the particular legislation in which we are involved. If we work in exports, the people in the export area may know you. If you are on the Judiciary Committee, a few folks interested in the courts and judiciary issues may know you. So most of us work in relative anonymity for a body that is constantly on television. There are so many of us, there are 435 plus our delegates, that it is very difficult to penetrate the public consciousness; but Mo Udall was somebody who as a result of his merit, his effort, his wit and his accomplishments in the Congress was someone known across the country. There are not many people that you can bring in to your own congressional district and have your constituents feel that it is not just another person in public office, but somebody very special coming in to join you.
Mo Udall with his wit and humor, with his incredible accomplishments in the Congress, his books, particularly his last book, "Too Funny To Be President," something that I think has given him a place maybe up there with Will Rogers in America, a politician on the inside, a humorist on the inside with the kind of wit and charm that never put the institution down, but showed America that we in elective office with all we do could have some humor and wit about us.
I want to talk about one small part
of what Mo Udall did, not the grand national parks, not his efforts in
Alaska and clean water and reform of government, trying to make our system
more representative, less controlled by a mad chase for money, his impact
on Presidential campaigns forcing other candidates to discuss issues they
might have ignored, but I would like to take one moment and place in the
Record a letter from the Society for American Archaeology, and also on
my own behalf, my own interest in archeology, that it is an issue with
not a broad constituency. As we talk about special interests in America,
it is not one that gets you great political benefit to be out there fighting
for archeological sites and archeological interests. You probably make
more enemies trying to protect a site than helping people; but Mo Udall
led this Nation in establishing some archeological legislation that protected
ancient sites in this land. As we develop these sites, as we take the time
to gain knowledge about our ancestors, we will learn about ourselves and
present some valuable information to our children and our grandchildren.
Without Mo Udall, we would be in a position in archeological presentation comparative to the dark ages. His efforts in the Congress as chairman of the Interior Committee moved us forward.
So I will place that statement in the Record with my own appreciation for his efforts, and close with this, that I came to this Congress 11 years ago. One of the reasons I sought to be on the Interior Committee was because Mo Udall was chairman of that committee. He set an ethical standard for conduct and a commitment for working for the people in this country that every legislator can use as a model. We can only hope to achieve just a little bit of the humor that he used to get us through all those tough days in committee and then through the floor.
We will miss Mo. We wish him a speedy recovery and hope to see him again as a friend here and in Arizona.
Mr. Speaker, I include the letter from the Society for American Archaeology, as follows:
SOCIETY FOR AMERICAN ARCHAEOLOGY,Hon. MORRIS K. UDALL,
OFFICE OF GOVERNMENT RELATIONS,
Washington, DC, May 2,1991.
Care of the Honorable Sam Gejdenson,
U.S. House of Representatives,
Cannon House Office Building, Washington, DC.
DEAR REPRESENTATIVE UDALL: On behalf of the members and officers of the Society for American Archaeology (SAA), I would like to thank you for all of your contributions to furthering the needs and goals of archaeology and historic preservation through the legislative process. As chairman of the House Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs, your contribution to archaeology and historic preservation on public lands and national parks has been measureless. Therefore, as you retire on May 4, 1991, the Society for American Archaeology would like to extend its heartfelt thanks to you for your commitment to archaeology and historic preservation and for your efforts to promote and protect the Nation's natural and cultural heritage.
The archaeological and historic
preservation legislation which you have spearheaded has helped to shape
and guide the way which archaeology and historic preservation activities
are conducted in the United States today. For example, your sponsorship
and leadership in the House of Representatives of the Archaeological Resources
Protection Act of 1979 and later amendments have helped to protect irreplaceable
archaeological resources on Federal lands from destruction by development
and looting and vandalism. Through the years, your valuable leadership
in Congress has guided the passage of vital legislation such as the National
Historic Preservation Act, the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation
Act (ANILCA), the Federal Lands Policy and Management Act of 1976, the
Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 and the Native American
Graves Protection and Repa-
of 1990. You have also been a staunch supporter of yearly appropriations
which are crucial to the fields of archaeology and historic preservation.
In addition to all of these accomplishments, you have also taken the time to personally meet with members of the archaeological profession to discuss issues of concern and countless times have offered your valuable advice and guidance.
Last year the Society for American Archaeology awarded you its highest honor to a non-archaeologist, the SAA Public Service Award. Today we are pleased to join others in recognizing you as you retire from the House of Representatives. We want to send our warmest good wishes for your retirement.
PRUDENCE RICE, PH.D.,
Mr. HUTTO. Mr. Speaker, I rise to congratulate Mo Udall for his service in the House of Representatives and to congratulate him on his retirement. Mo is a statesman of the first order, and regardless of whether you are on the same side or on the opposite side of an issue with Mo Udall, you have to like the man. He has a quality of endearment that is hard to match. Mo you might say is a Congressman's Congressman. He will be as well-respected by just about everyone in and out of Congress.
We have heard here today about many of his accomplishments as well as his personal attributes. America is truly better for the service of Mo Udall. He will be greatly missed in this body.
So Mo, may God richly bless you and your family.
Mr. KOSTMAYER. Mr. Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from the Virgin Islands (Mr. de Lugo).
Mr. de LUGO. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding.
Mr. Speaker, when I first came to this Congress and went on the Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs, I remember there sitting at the top dais was Mo Udall, Tom Foley, and Phil Burton and a lot of other outstanding Members of this House. Mo Udall is a special American. You go into the committee room of the Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs, and you will see a picture of Mo before he became ill, and you see this vigorous, great American. He epitomizes what we would like to think our country stands for. He stood for it. That is the type of man he is. Mo is a man of vision, persistence, patience, compassion and, of course, as you have heard so many times here today, a great American with warm humor.
Few who achieve the influence that
he did during 30 years of extraordinary service to this country retain
such warmth, such a sense of humor and so much humility. He was not only
loved and beloved, but he was an astute leader.
always approach Mo Udall to ask for help, to ask for his advise, and so
forth. This man was responsible for some of the great legislation enacted
during the 1970's and 1980's. But he had a great sense of humor.
So perhaps you will forgive me if I remind the House that he also played a role in setting up the postal system as we know it today. So Mo was also human; everything was not perfect.
We all kidded him about that many times.
But America would not be America as we know it today without Mo Udall. He brought into it and preserved so much of this country, the Alaska lands bill that you have heard so much about today, and other legislation.
When Mo Udall ran for President back in 1976, his vision, his candor, his honesty won him the admiration of many who appreciated his straightforward, down-to-Earth approach to the issues. Yet, even in the pitched battles for the State primaries, he never lost sight that it was the people with whom and for whom he was working.
During my years as a member of the Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs, Mo was a teacher, a scholar, a friend who was never too busy, and as the gentleman from Florida (Mr. Hutto) just said, he was always the statesman to all of us in this House.
Mr. Speaker, many of the achievements we have made in the offshore areas could not have been accomplished without the guidance, the support and the leadership of Mo Udall.
It is indeed fitting that the easternmost and westernmost points of the United States, Guam and the Virgin Islands--my home--are named after the Udall brothers, Stewart and Mo. These points look out to the rest of the world, named after a gentleman who indeed in many ways seemed to symbolize much that is America, its genius, its temperance, its leadership and the hard-earned, well-deserved respect of their fellow Americans.
Mr. Speaker, I believe that Mo Udall stands as a giant in this Nation's history. Mo Udall is on a par with the greatest of the gentlemen who have achieved fame in these Halls.
Mr. Speaker, we will miss him, we will miss his wisdom, we will miss his humor and we will miss his comradeship and remember him always.
Mr. Speaker, I salute Mo Udall upon the occasion of his retirement. No man deserves it more.
I wish him swift recovery.
I would also like to add that in
these difficult times he has been fortunate to have a loyal and a loving
and wonderful human being by his side, his wife, Norma, to help him through
these difficult days.
Mr. Speaker, I yield to the distinguished gentleman from Indiana (Mr. Roemer).
Mr. ROEMER. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
Mr. Speaker, I rise to support Mo Udall's contribution to this body, to his State of Arizona and to his country, including the State of Indiana. As a freshman Congressman, I had not had much time in the last 3 or 4 months to know Mo Udall very well, but I would like to talk about three different things very briefly that have most indelibly impressed me about Mo Udall.
Mr. Speaker, for 4 years I worked on the staff of the senior Senator from Arizona, Senator Dennis DeConcini. Staff members, Mr. Speaker, I guess it is inevitable, always talk about other Members. We did a lot of work with Mo Udall and his staff. Mo Udall always took the time, when we were working with him, to ask not only how the Senator was but to ask how the staff people were and to pat somebody on the back or on the shoulder when they did a nice job.
Mo Udall cared about everybody, not just other Members.
As a colleague, as a nervous freshman coming into this body for a caucus for one of the first times, this is a busy place and some people scoot by you rather quickly. Mo Udall was not feeling well. You could tell that the struggles with his health were affecting him to some degree. But he still took the time to sit down and tell me a joke. That meant a lot to me, and it is something I will never forget, and it is something that touched me.
He is alive with humor, and this place will be alive with humor for a long time, remembering Mo Udall.
Last, as a Member of this institution, sometimes we struggle with our pride in this institution when we have town meetings and people are not very pleased with the job that Congress is doing. Well, Mo Udall brought respect to this body. It is something that I will continue to work at, to bring respect here. I have learned that from Mo and other distinguished Members in this body. And even as a freshman Member, having been here for 3 months, Mo Udall has taught me much about politics, about public service, about laughter and about caring about people.
Thank you, Mo, and Godspeed and God bless your family.
Mr. KOSTMAYER. Mr. Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from Georgia (Mr. Darden).
Mr. DARDEN. I thank my good friend
from Pennsylvania for yielding to me.
|I would like
to take a few moments to share with the people here today my fondness and
my recollection about that wonderful man, Mo Udall.
I am the proud owner, incidentally, of five copies of that great book, "Too Funny To Be President." I went to the signing and was able to get there early and got those copies signed one day. I treasure them very much. I presented one to my father, who has since deceased. He enjoyed it very much. Then one to my father-in-law and others, very special members of my family. I was able to help share the wisdom of Mo Udall and his wit as well to my family members who had never had the distinct honor and pleasure of knowing Mo.
Mo had a lot of jokes. Mo believed that once he told a joke, it belonged to the public domain. I was never shy about using Mo Udall's jokes, no matter what circumstances I happened to be in.
One night I was in Athens, GA, and was introducing coach Vince Dooley, a very famous coach and athletic director at the University of Georgia. Coach Dooley is a good man, a pretty serious fellow. His wife, Barbara, was sitting next to him as well.
I told an old story that Mo used to tell that politicians and football coaches are very similar. In fact, here is how they are similar: One is, they have to be smart enough to know the players to get by, and they have to be dumb enough to think that what they are doing is important. Coach Dooley did not appreciate that comparison between politicians and football coaches. But his wife burst with laughter. So, I could tell that she is the one with the sense of humor and perhaps it was not he.
But in any event, what Mo Udall taught us so many, many times is that we can take ourselves entirely too seriously. He perfected the art, I have heard said many, many times here today, that you take the job seriously but do not take yourselves seriously. That is how he was so effective.
I want to recall before this body one personal experience I had with Mo Udall. One thing that I saw that I do not believe anybody else had the opportunity to see. That occurred just this past October.
Everybody here and everybody, I
think, in the sound of my voice probably went through the misery we all
went through last October when we tried to adjourn. This was not Congress'
finest hour, incidentally, when we grappled over the budget, and we had
sessions through the weekend, and many of us could not go back to our districts
to finish our campaign because we simply had to stay up here and be in
session. I think Speaker Foley quite wisely made us stay in session until
we finished our business, even though the elections were only about a week
the final night we were in session, after being up here for about 3 weekends
straight, and many of my colleagues recall we stayed up all night Saturday
night, and then until Sunday morning, and fortunately our proceedings are
broadcast here on TV because I do not think my wife would have ever believed
that I was up all Saturday night attending a session of Congress and voting,
but we in fact were. And as most everyone here recalls, we spent the night
in our offices waiting for the bells to ring and waiting to make that final
Mr. Speaker, I was feeling like many Members of the House might have felt that day, somewhat perturbed and upset with, not only the performance of Congress, but really looking at myself and wondering is this what I really want to do? I really want to keep on doing this and putting up with the harassment we are getting from the folks back home and at the same time the inconvenience and the long, long sessions we were having up here? And I was frankly feeling a little sorry for myself about 7 o'clock in the morning as I had cast that last vote, and I was going over to my office to get a cab to take an early flight out to Atlanta, where I had to go and be at a church service where I was speaking at about 10 or 11 o'clock later on that morning.
Mr. Speaker, I was feeling somewhat sorry for myself. I was working too hard. Is it really worth it? What is this all about anyway?
When I came down to the basement and was about to go to the Cannon Building about 7 o'clock in the morning as the last vote was being cast, I saw Mo Udall from a distance walking over to cast that last vote to pass that last budget, and we all know it took him quite a while to get from his office over in Cannon to over here on the floor. But as I approached him and as I came one step closer and one step closer, I thought to myself. Here am I feeling sorry for myself. Here I am wondering what it is all about. And here is Mo Udall, crippled, tired. He has been up all night, a man 25 years older than I am, and he is hardly able to walk, but still coming through to cast that last vote.
Since that time I reflect back on that, and I have told the story many times, and I really have not felt sorry for myself anymore in the discharge of my duties.
It was a real pleasure to know, and to work with and to love Mo Udall, and we shall miss him, and his heritage is one that will never be forgotten here at the House of Representatives.
Mr. KOSTMAYER. Mr. Speaker, I yield to my good friend, the gentleman from Alaska (Mr. Young).
of Alaska. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. Kostmayer)
Mr. Speaker, I was watching this testimony to a gentleman that I have known for 18 years, probably longer than anybody that spoke, and I was in my office doing my work, and I decided I had to come over and speak about a House Member that I have served with that long and watched him over the years be my greatest adversary next to John Seiberling. But out of that adversarial role we became very good friends.
And many people talk about Mo Udall's wit, and it is the thing that kept us together. I am not going to be able to recite his wit, but my colleagues know how it is to sit in a room in a committee where the chairman of the committee and subcommittee chairmen are taking away what we believe our rights are in the State of Alaska.
However, Mr. Speaker, Mo had a way of telling me that what he was doing he believed in, and that I deeply respected. He always, as many people have mentioned, was straightforward. He was always generous to me, he was always warm, and, if he beat me, he always told me when he was going to beat me. That I deeply respected also.
Mr. Speaker, I beat him twice in his committee with him being the majority. He took it both times very graciously and turned around and beat me on the House floor, and that again is a great trait of a great leader.
Now in my State of Alaska everybody knows Stewart Udall. He locked up the State, and then Mo Udall made it into many parks and made it wilderness. We do not know whether he was right. I am not sure if he will be right. But he believed in what he was doing, and only time will tell.
I do know this, that as time goes by, even in Alaska there is a great more appreciation of what he was able to do.
In speaking about Mo, and I hope that he will be able to hear me, I say I will miss him tremendously. We have a new chairman. He is a good man. He will be a good friend. But being with someone over a period of 18 years, and watching him come up through the subcommittee ranks, and then to the full committee chairmanship, and becoming the senior member on my side, and working with somebody side by side, it is a relationship that I will cherish for the rest of my life, and I hope Mo will cherish the friendship that I feel toward him. I say, "Mo, I can tell you one thing, that as this year goes by, and the next year, and the year after, watch what we do, and let us know. Even then I will listen to what you have to say. God bless you."
Mr. Speaker, I yield to the gentlewoman from Maryland (Mrs. Bentley).
Mrs. BENTLEY. Mr. Speaker, I was vey delighted to let the special orders that I had reserved be pushed back in order to allow this tribute to that wonderful American, Mo Udall.
Mr. Speaker, I did not serve on any of his committees, but I listened about him from all of the other Members, the Members on our side who served with him. They always had the greatest respect for him.
What I remember most about him is his pleasantness. He is just so pleasant. Every time I saw him, even though it was difficult for him to move, he had a smile on his face, and he always had a hello, and a very nice hello.
Mr. Speaker, he certainly will be missed in this body because he was just such a very, very nice human being, and I do want to commend the gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. Kostmayer) and the gentleman from Utah (Mr. Owens) who took this special time to pay tribute to this great American while he can watch what everybody is saying about him.
Mr. KOSTMAYER. Mr. Speaker, I came here in 1977, having been elected in 1976. The year 1976, of course, was the year that Congressman Udall was a candidate for the nomination of our party, and I voted for Mo Udall in the Democratic primary in Pennsylvania in 1976, and we shared a campaign headquarters in the Eighth Congressional District. I never met him, but I knew his work and admired his positions, and I have a special admiration for the strong positions he took on the environment.
And then I came here in 1977, in January of that year, having been elected from Pennsylvania, and I joined the Interior Committee on which I have served continuously since 1976 except for one term when I was defeated. I came back in 1982 and got back on the Interior Committee.
And there is a great deal which has been said about Mo Udall today, and I really do not have very much to add except for a couple of things, one of which someone who spoke earlier said, and that is that this is an institution which is pretty badly beaten up in the country these days. Sometimes it is justifiable, but most often, I think, not justifiable.
Mr. Speaker, the presence of Congressman Udall as a Member of the House has, I think, enhanced the stature of this institution. I think his membership reflected well on the institution, and I think that is very, very important. We remember him for many things, and most of those things have already been spoken of more eloquently than I can speak of them, for challenging this institution
Main | Contents | Illustrations | Book Cover | Title Page
Addresses and Special Orders Held in the U.S. House of Representatives
and the Senate, Presented in Honor of The Honorable Morris K. "Mo" Udall,
A Representative from Arizona, One Hundred Second Congress, First Session
Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1993