January 6th, 2009
01:31 PM ET
14 years ago

Time heals old political wounds


[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/06/art.getty.thune.daschle.jpg caption="Tom Daschle and John Thune were once political adversaries, but time seems to have paved over the bitterness as the two were spotted shaking hands and patting each other on the back."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former Senate Democratic Leader Tom Daschle returned “home” Tuesday to the Senate floor and stood alongside a bitter adversary to watch his longtime friend and South Dakota colleague Tim Johnson be sworn-in for a third term.

Sen. Johnson, who suffered a devastating stroke, was flanked by Daschle and Republican Sen. John Thune, who defeated the Democratic leader by a razor thin 51% to 49 % margin in what can be accurately described as a bitter contest. Daschle was first elected to Congress as a House member in 1978 and successfully ran for the Senate in 1986.

But time seems to have paved over the bitterness. As Thune and Daschle departed the Senate floor, the two former adversaries shook hands and patted each other on the back.

Daschle returns to Capitol Hill on Thursday for the Senate Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions Committee hearing on his nomination to be the next secretary of Health and Human Services.

Filed under: John Thune • Tom Daschle
soundoff (47 Responses)
  1. Objective thinking

    Cue anti-Republican remark from "Proud American" in 3... 2... 1...

    January 6, 2009 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  2. Louis

    The wounds that need to be healed are those inflicted on the American people. Our incompetent leadership and financial institutions have caused the current financial disaster that has hurt the citizens of our nation. Most people get up in the morning, put in a hard days work, and raise their families. It's a crime that our government's policies have destroyed the financial security of so many of these responsible Americans.

    January 6, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  3. Cindy Shaffer

    Don't you believe it! Daschle and Thune despise each other and will do all they can to cause distress to the other at the "right" time.

    January 6, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  4. Mike, Syracuse NY

    Objective Thinking, glad to see someone else recognizing Proud American for the fruit loop he is. I'm sure when the passed the First Amendment, they didn't have him in mind.

    January 6, 2009 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  5. Gary

    They were both there to honor a remarkable and admirable colleague, Sen. Johnson. Enough said.

    January 6, 2009 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  6. JOHN

    Corr: America will be a good place to live in!

    January 6, 2009 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  7. ronald

    Yeah, right....they are such GOOD FRIENDS now.
    Top notch reporting CNN.
    Why not INTERVIEW the two gentlemen and see

    January 6, 2009 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  8. Lesley

    Of course they are cordial. It doesn't mean anything. Besides, Daschle is now in the Obama cabinet so Thune is practically forced to deal with him.

    January 6, 2009 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  9. Tony

    Is Jon Thuen still whinning? Do the republicans ever come up for air. Pathetic!

    January 6, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  10. Bob

    Razor thin margin? If it were the other way around it would have been a Mandate !

    January 6, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  11. Any day now

    As soon as peace in the Middle East is achieved we will get right on the bitter and divisive partisanship in American politics...

    January 6, 2009 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  12. a new year

    the scars that this administration has put on america are so deep, they will never go away.

    January 6, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  13. jj


    Thank you America for choosing the right man for the job.

    Obama is the new face of America to come.

    It's future come early!!

    January 6, 2009 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  14. Carl Justus

    It is unfortunate that South Dakota went backwards when they elected Thune instead of Daschle.

    Some people never do understand when they have the best man on their side.

    January 6, 2009 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  15. Uncle Fester

    Bob January 6th, 2009 2:19 pm ET

    Razor thin margin? If it were the other way around it would have been a Mandate

    You mean like the 2004 presidential election??

    January 6, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  16. Jan Illinois

    Well isn't that just grand? They all know that they are totally screwing the American public into the ground, and they could care less. The pat on the back represents, Hey, Ol buddy get all you can get , I sure did!!!!!!

    January 6, 2009 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  17. Ellie

    What a CROCK OF CRAP!! Does Meet The Press really think Americans are buying this load of BS? Geeez, they must really be stuck on STUPID!!!

    January 6, 2009 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  18. Proud American

    John Thune = Still a Idiot.

    January 6, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  19. Amber

    Politics isn't about sports teams and sides unless you're a blogger.

    Anyone remember Ronald Reagan and Tip O'Neil? How about Dwight Eisenhower and Adlai Stevenson? People with opposing views actually getting along isn't a new concept.

    January 6, 2009 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  20. Laverne

    Well Daschle has a new job now so I guess all is WELL!

    January 6, 2009 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  21. Griff

    A Life-Time!! Everytime I leave a comment with CNN. (The Shout Racist)... I am a realist.... Black is White and Visa Versa to me....
    Religion! Programing Kids with Past Garbage on Religion...
    Is what I Hate.... Stop this Preaching and the little folk to come, plus those here will mabe have a Future.... Thopusand of Years of Garbage History.... Playing King..... Has to stop if you want peace in the World...

    January 6, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  22. Michael

    Oh, if one could only read minds.

    January 6, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  23. chris

    Daschle ends up in the best position as someone already stated. Thune has to deal with the reality that the following is coming:

    – healthcare
    – cardcheck
    – etc.........

    January 6, 2009 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  24. Plainsman

    I think cnn buried the lead a bit. Shouldn't the story be about a man who was once at death's door, but now has made a substantial recovery.

    January 6, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  25. Proud American

    Is John Thune anyway related to Bush? Just a thought because he even looks stupid.

    January 6, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
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