Republicans and Democrats unite to honor World War II veterans at U.S. Capitol showing of ‘Honor Flight’

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In this time of heated partisanship, Senators and Congressmen from both political parties came together to host a viewing of documentary film Honor Flight at the Capitol Visitor Center Tuesday night. The film celebrates World War II veterans – 900 of whom die every day – and the group that brings them to Washington to visit their memorial.

“There is no better feeling than to stand and face that bus – when it rolls up from Reagan to the World War II memorial – to greet these veterans as they arrive,” said Congressman Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.).

Ryan gestured to a WWII veteran near him named  Joe Demler and said, “Joe fought in the Battle of the Bulge – he was captured by the Nazis. They sent him to a POW camp – they never gave him food or water. By the time he was freed he weighed 70 pounds. Life magazine took a picture of him lying in the hospital and they called him the ‘human skeleton.’

“He’s 87 on Friday,” Ryan said. “He was born on the anniversary of Pearl Harbor, and he is with us today.” Turning to Joe, Ryan said, “Joe Demler, thank you for your service.

“Our founders created the American idea, and our veterans secured and preserved it each and every generation,” Ryan continued, quoting Will Rodgers: “We can’t all be heroes, but some of us can stand on the curb and clap as they go by.”

Suhail Khan spoke on behalf of Microsoft, a sponsor of the event. He spoke about how his grandfather’s service in World Wars I and II inspired him to get involved in this project – “this is a chance for us as family members to turn and say thank you to those who served our country.”

Khan introduced Dr. David Pecora, a surgeon from Yonkers, N.Y., and Dorothy Pecora, a nurse with Patton’s 3rd Armored division.

“They got married – with special permission from the Supreme Allied Commander General Eisenhower – before D-Day, they had one night together.” They didn’t see each other for nearly a year afterward. Dorothy went on to receive three battle stars and a bronze star for being fired upon and to treat victims from two concentration camps.

Senator Herb Kohl (D-Wisc.) spoke of how he helped a wounded veteran, Vern Arendt, receive a purple heart after 7 decades of being denied the honor.

“We owe a great debt of gratitude to the veterans of World War II,” he said. “Without their service and sacrifice the United States would not be the free country that it is today.”

Congressman Sean Duffy (R-Wisc.) acknowledged what a great showing of bipartisanship the gathering was.

“We all know we don’t agree on taxes or spending, but we do agree that we come together to honor the great men and women who have served our country,” he said.

“Each generation fights for freedom, liberty and democracy and passes it off to the next generation,” Duffy said.

Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio) spoke about her involvement in the nearly 17-year production of the World War II memorial. “The idea came from the heart of America – it came from a veteran who spoke to his member of Congress.”

Kaptur called the monument’s location “the most important location on our hall of democracy.” She eloquently explained its situation “between the Washington Monument, which represents the President but also the founding of the republic in the eighteenth century, and then the Lincoln Memorial, a memorial to the president, but also to the nation that unified and held the republic together.”

“Between them then,” she concluded, “the most important achievement of the Twentieth Century, the victory of liberty over tyranny.”

The last day to see Honor Flight is currently Dec. 14. To find a location Honor Flight is showing near you or request a showing, visit the film’s website.

Comments

Polititainment

Brand: ISIS better than conservatives
Actor Russell Brand took to Youtube Wednesday to compare terrorist group ISIS to conservatives, eventually coming to the conclusion that conservatives in power were worse than ISIS. Brand was recording yet another video aimed at attacking Fox News when he made the statements about ISIS. He was responding to Fox host Greg Gutfeld’s comments about Brand’s […]
Biden congratulates 'Veep' on Emmy win
From one Vice President to another… Vice President Joe Biden took to Twitter Tuesday to congratulate actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus on her Emmy win. Louis-Dreyfus snagged her third consecutive Outstanding Actress in a Comedy series win Monday for her portrayal of a fictional vice president on HBO’s “Veep.” Last year, the VP picked up the phone […]
Emmys snub political TV shows
Most of the 66th  annual Primetime Emmy Awards on Monday felt like a repeat of 2013′s awards show. “Modern Family,” “Breaking Bad” and “The Big Bang Theory’s” Jim Parsons all dominated the night, leaving most of the politically-themed and Washington D.C.-set shows out in the cold. Though “House of Cards”, “Scandal”, “Homeland”, “The Good Wife”, “The […]
Let's Play Emmy Bingo!

Play Emmy Bingo (specially created for lovers of political entertainment!) along with us as the winners are awarded during NBC's live broadcast Monday night.

Rick Perry's mugshot, marketing asset

Lesson: No matter how hard you try to make Rick Perry look bad, it just ain't gonna work.

White House

White House flirt Joe Biden turns on the charm for 108-year-old veteran Lucy Coffey

Joe Biden continues to brand himself the White House flirt. In a recently released video of Biden's July 25 meeting with Lucy Coffee, the vice president kisses the 108-year-old war veteran on the cheek and hand and tells her, "I'm the guy that loves you."

White House: Checked-out Obama is a media myth
THE HILL – The White House is bristling at suggestions President Obama is disconnected, checked out or out of touch. White House allies maintain that the storyline of a checked-out president is a myth drummed up by the media during the summer doldrums. “It’s bull—t,” said one former senior administration official. “This is a guy who […]
Obama’s summer vacation by the numbers
After two weeks away from the White House, President Barack Obama’s vacation on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, ends late Sunday. A look, by the numbers, at how Obama spent the time while juggling his responsibilities as president, including monitoring the situations in Iraq and in Ferguson, Missouri: — 15: days, all or part, spent on the […]
Obama is halfway to becoming an EGOT winner after ‘Between Two Ferns’ appearance snags Emmy award
President of the United States might not be the most exclusive title Barack Obama holds soon. Obama is now halfway to becoming an “EGOT” winner, an elite title that only 12 other individuals including the likes of Audrey Hepburn and Helen Hayes can claim. “EGOT”  stands for the four major annual American entertainment awards: the Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony. Winning […]

Congress

IRS says Lerner's Blackberry 'destroyed'

A senior IRS lawyer has said in a sworn declaration that Lois Lerner's BlackBerry was intentionally destroyed after Congress had begun to investigate her involvement in IRS targeting of conservative groups.

Youth impact reason enough to pass jobs bills
The U.S. House Committee on Ways and Means is in the midst of releasing 40 reasons over the course of 40 days that the Senate should take up the 40 jobs bills the House has already passed. While most of their reasons have focused on general unemployment and economic growth statistics, they turned their attention […]
UNEARTHED: Archival footage of Harry Reid smiling

From appearances, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid derives little pleasure from his job, perhaps a deputy to the paragon of joylessness. But Red Alert Politics has dug into the archives to demonstrate that it wasn't always like this.

Rubio: Obama action would kill immigration reform
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) is urging President Barack Obama to forego taking executive action on immigration, warning that would kill any chance for comprehensive immigration reform. “If indeed you move forward on such a decision, I believe it will close the door to any chance of making progress on immigration reform for the foreseeable future,” […]
House GOP hires legal representation to sue Obama
THE HILL – House Republicans have hired D.C. law firm BakerHostetler to provide legal representation to sue President Obama. House Administration Committee Chairwoman Candice Miller (R-Mich.) signed a contract on Monday for BakerHostetler to represent the House in the civil action lawsuit in a U.S. district court against the president. “The president must be held accountable, and the […]