Senate honors Ted Stevens with moment of silence, summer recess
The Senate honored Ted Stevens, the former Senator from Alaska who was killed in a plane crash this week, with a moment of silence, a resolution and an end-of-summer recess.
Stevens, who served in the Senate for 40 years until he lost the 2008 election amid a corruption scandal, was on a fishing trip with a small group of friends when their small plane crashed in a remote area of Alaska.
The Senate returned to session on Thursday to give final approval to legislation to provide $600 million to strengthen security along the border with Mexico in the latest measure aimed at fighting illegal immigration, a highly politically sensitive issue in this midterm election year.
With two senators present representing the 100-member chamber, the Senate also used the occasion to honor Stevens.
Senator Charles Schumer made note of the Incredible Hulk tie that Stevens would wear when there was a battle to be fought on the Senate floor.
The Senate resolution noted that Stevens began serving in the Senate nine years after Alaska achieved statehood, was the longest-serving Republican senator in history, and was “well respected for reaching across the aisle to forge bipartisan alliances…”
And while the Senate had already planned to be in recess until Sept. 13 before Stevens’ death, it marked the recess as an additional honor to the former senator.
“I ask unanimous consent that when the Senate completes it business today it adjourn under the provision of H. Con. Res. 307 and Senate Res. 617 as a mark of further respect to the late Senator Ted Stevens until 2:30 on Monday, September 13th,” Schumer said.
Photo credit: Reuters/handout (Stevens and Spiderman at Internet safety event, July 2004)