June 28th, 2010
12:42 PM ET
13 years ago

Biden: Byrd was 'a tough, compassionate, and outspoken leader'

During an event in Kentucky, Vice President Biden paid tribute to Sen. Robert Byrd, D-West Virginia, who passed away early Monday morning.

(Read Biden's remarks after the jump)

Remarks of Vice President Joe Biden as released by the White House

"As we used to say in my years in the Senate, if you’ll excuse a point of personal privilege here for a moment, a very close friend of mine, one of my mentors - a guy who was there when I was a 29-year-old kid being sworn into the United States Senate shortly thereafter; a guy who stood in the rain, in a pouring rain, freezing rain outside a church as I buried my daughter and my wife before I got sworn in, Robert C. Byrd. He passed away today. He was the - we lost the dean of the United States Senate, but also the state of West Virginia lost its most fierce advocate and, as I said, I lost a dear friend.

“Throughout his 51 years, the longest tenure of any member in Congress in the history of the United States, Robert C. Byrd was a tough, compassionate, and outspoken leader and dedicated above all else to making life better for the people of the mountain state - his state, the state of West Virginia. He never lost sight of home. He may have spent half a century in Washington. But there’s a guy - if anybody wondered - he never, never, never, never took his eye of his beloved mountain state. And we shall not - to paraphrase the poet - we shall not see his like again. And the Senate is a lesser place for his going."

Filed under: Joe Biden • Robert Byrd
soundoff (33 Responses)
  1. RM

    And a former member of the KKK... Where is the outrage for this man? Oh yeah, he's a Democrat.

    June 28, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  2. Barb

    Mr. Byrd was known as the KING OF PORK and we all know what that means. Now there is one less elder in the senate – that is good news for a change. Someone in office like him for 50 plus years aren't part of the US problems, THEY are the problem. November will be here soon enought and I believe we will see great changes in the House and Senate. The old will be replaced with new blood.. I don't just mean old in age – I mean all the political lifers who have held their possition much to long. We Americans will take our Country back one vote at a time. I think the politicians who are up for re-election are concerned that they will be kicked out of office. I intend to do my share at the polls and hope you all do the same.

    June 28, 2010 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  3. Brian

    No way Biden wrote that, must have come from an aide. At least Joe got the delivery right this time.

    June 28, 2010 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  4. Doris V

    Byrd was 92 years old. It was time for him to depart this earth and not spend anymore health care dollars at the end of life. Sympathies to his friends and family who will miss him.

    June 28, 2010 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  5. Conservative Democrat

    One less racist in the world.

    June 28, 2010 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  6. joe

    Joe Biden, friend of ex-klan member Byrd how nice.

    June 28, 2010 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  7. Get A Grip

    And so a former member of the Ku Klux Klan, having the title of Kleagle (recruiter) and Exalted Cyclops, passes on.

    June 28, 2010 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  8. All the news that is fit to omit

    No reason to post any negatives about him or allow for any negative posting on his KKK grand leader days.

    My bad, he is a democrat after all.

    June 28, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
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