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Sweet blog: Tributes to Henry Hyde. We remember. FREQUENT UPDATES


NEW YORK--Reacts, remembrances on former Rep. Henry Hyde (R-Ill.), who died early Thursday morning in Chicago. “I believe his heart just gave out,” his stepdaughter Sue Schiesser said. Hyde died around 3 a.m. at Rush University Medical Center. Lynn Sweet remembering Hyde on CSPAN LINK

President Bush statement: "Laura and I are deeply saddened by the death of former Congressman Henry Hyde. From his service in the Navy during World War II until his retirement from the U.S. House of Representatives last year, Henry Hyde led a life devoted to public service. During more than 30 years as a Congressman, he represented the people of Illinois with character and dignity -- and always stood for a strong and purposeful America. This fine man believed in the power of freedom, and he was a tireless champion of the weak and forgotten. He used his talents to build a more hopeful America and promote a culture of life. Earlier this month, in recognition of his good and purposeful life, I was proud to award Henry Hyde the Medal of Freedom.

Congressman Hyde's passing represents a great loss to the people of Illinois and our Nation, and our thoughts and prayers are with his family in this sad hour.

For a string of other tributes from officials...and comments on Hyde's career, click below....

Pelosi Statement on the Passing of Congressman Henry Hyde

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued the following statement honoring the life of Congressman Henry Hyde of Illinois, who passed away today: “The death of Henry Hyde is a great loss to his constituents in Illinois and to the House of Representatives – an institution he loved.
“Though we were often on opposite sides of various issues, we were able to join together on certain issues, such as family leave laws, to make progress for all Americans.
“I hope it is a comfort to Chairman Hyde’s three children and four grandchildren that so many people mourn their loss and are praying for them in this sad time.”

Statement from Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich
On the passing of Congressman Henry Hyde

SPRINGFIELD – “Henry Hyde was a man of deep conviction, and an eloquent spokesman for the causes he believed in. I had the privilege of serving with him in the United States Congress. For more than three decades, Henry Hyde served the people of Illinois with great distinction and earned a distinguished place in Illinois history. My wife Patti and I extend our condolences to the entire Hyde family.”

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Laurel County, KY. – U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell made the following statement Thursday regarding the passing of former Illinois Representative Henry Hyde:

“Today we lost a true statesman. As a committed warrior in the fight to protect the unborn, Henry Hyde gave a voice to those who were unable to speak for themselves. His legacy exceeds his years as a legislator, and expands far beyond the borders of the district he served and the nation he adored.”
Boehner Statement on the Death of Former Congressman Henry Hyde (R-IL)

WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH) issued the following statement on the death of former Congressman Henry Hyde (R-IL):

“I have long included Henry Hyde among my heroes, and for the 16 years I served with him in the House, I was honored to call him a mentor, a colleague, and a friend. Henry was a student of American history, a constitutional scholar, a thoughtful legislator, and a passionate orator. But above all, he will be remembered as a gentleman who stood as a beacon for the bedrock principles of liberty, justice, and, above all, respect for life. His work in crafting the Mexico City policy, for example, remains among his most significant accomplishments in Congress, and it will forever be remembered as a defining moment for the pro-life cause.

“What often struck me most about Henry was his keen sense of our nation’s history and of the gifts bestowed on our Republic by the Founding Fathers, whose actions and deeds were never far from his mind. In his respect for the institutional integrity of the House of Representatives, Henry took second place to no one. He was a forceful advocate for maintaining the dignity of the House and for recognizing the sacrifices and struggles Members make while in its service. Indeed, when Henry spoke in Committee or on the House floor, Members on both sides of aisle listened intently – and they learned. And while he had unquestionably strong views on domestic and foreign policy, Henry never allowed political differences to cloud personal relationships.

“Henry served his country with great honor and distinction, and it is only fitting that President Bush awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom just three weeks ago. Hard as it is to let go, we can be comforted knowing that God gave us a man of Henry Hyde’s character who did his patriotic duty to the fullest. I send my thoughts and prayers to the entire Hyde family in their time of loss.”

NOTE: Born in 1924, Rep. Henry Hyde (R-IL) served the 6th District of Illinois in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1975 through 2006, serving on the House Judiciary Committee throughout his entire time in Congress. He chaired the Judiciary Committee from 1995 to 2001 and also served as Chairman of the House International Relations Committee from 2001 until his retirement last year. On November 5, President Bush awarded Hyde the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the very highest honor the President can bestow on an American citizen.



Boston, MA – Today, Governor Mitt Romney issued the following statement on the passing of former Rep. Henry Hyde (R-IL):

"At this moment of grief, our hearts and prayers go out to the family of a truly distinguished American – Henry Hyde. Having served his country with honor, he earned bipartisan respect and admiration for his wide-ranging public service. From his time in the Navy to his long career in the U.S. House of Representatives, Henry Hyde leaves an honored legacy of championing freedom both here at home and abroad. He was the pre-eminent, pro-life champion of our time. Today, we remember the life of a truly great American."

Emanuel Statement Death of Former U.S. Rep. Henry Hyde

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Representative Rahm Emanuel (D-IL) released the following statement on the death of former U.S. Representative Henry Hyde.

“Today, we mourn the passing of former U.S. Representative, Henry Hyde. He dutifully served the people of the Sixth district of Illinois for 15 terms, and we will never forget his service to the great state of Illinois. Our thoughts and prayers are with his friends and family today.”



(BATAVIA, November 29) - 14th Congressional District GOP candidate Jim Oberweis - responding to news that former U.S. Representative Henry Hyde passed away early this morning - today lauded Hyde for his service to his community and his nation and offered condolences to his family and friends.

"Henry Hyde was a giant in the Congress," said Oberweis, "and the Congress's greatest defender of unborn life. Not for nothing is the federal law that prohibits the use of taxpayer funds to pay for abortion services known as the Hyde Amendment. Passed just a few years after the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision, the Hyde Amendment has been in place now for more than three decades, ensuring that no federal taxpayer dollars are used to pay for abortions on demand. It is conservatively estimated that the Hyde Amendment prevented, over the course of the last three decades, at least one million abortions - that's one million Americans who are alive today because of Henry Hyde. The Hyde Amendment, it can be said without exaggeration, is the most important piece of pro-life legislation ever enacted.

"But Henry Hyde was more than Washington's greatest defender of unborn life," Oberweis continued. "He was a Navy veteran of World War II, a stalwart advocate of a stronger national defense, and one of liberty's greatest champions. His was a consistent and principled voice promoting freedom around the world, whether in Central America or behind the Iron Curtain. As Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and later as Chairman of the House International Affairs Committee, he shepherded to passage crucial legislation that has made us safer and more secure. And just three weeks ago, the President honored his service to our nation by awarding Henry the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America's highest civilian honor.

"Perhaps most important, though, Henry Hyde was a true gentleman. Too many times nowadays, when we watch a debate on the floor of the House of Representatives, we see our leaders referring to one another as 'the distinguished gentleman,' or 'my esteemed colleague,' and we know they're just mouthing platitudes. But no Member of Congress was just mouthing platitudes when he or she referred to Henry Hyde as a distinguished gentleman or an esteemed colleague - he was both, and he was more. In an era when Congressional debates seem all too often to devolve into partisan mudslinging, it is his civility that will be missed most of all.

"His family and friends are in my thoughts and prayers today."
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Comment Of Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.)

On The Death Of Former Rep. Henry Hyde (R-Ill.)

Thursday, Nov. 29, 2007

“Henry Hyde was a credit to public service and to the House of Representatives, where he served so long and so ably. He practiced the ‘old school’ values like civility, which help make the legislative process work. And he knew how to defuse a difficult situation with humor.”

# # # # #


WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Peter J. Roskam (R-IL) today issued the following statement on the death of former Congressman Henry Hyde:

“Congressman Hyde unequivocally embodied the title of statesman in every sense of the word. His leadership when speaking on the House floor drew attention from each member in the chamber. The clarity of his thoughts, the wisdom of his foresight and the principled values he espoused were unmatched.

“When I worked for Henry more than 20 years ago it was obvious I was in the presence of a man whose convictions, beliefs and actions were one in the same. Henry truly represented Illinois’ 6th Congressional District with the utmost distinction and will forever be remembered for his work.

“It is an honor to succeed him in Congress, however there is no replacing Henry. My thoughts and prayers go out to the entire Hyde family.”


Kyl: Henry Hyde was the “Gentleman from Illinois”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) today released the following statement regarding the passing of former Illinois Congressman Henry Hyde:

“I’m saddened to say goodbye to a great American leader, statesman, and friend, Henry Hyde. When Members are recognized or called upon on the House floor, it’s tradition that they are introduced as the gentleman or gentlewoman from their particular state. Well, when it comes to Henry Hyde, he was truly ‘the gentleman from Illinois.’ Caryll and I extend our deepest condolences and sympathies to the entire Hyde family.”


Henry Hyde's adulteries and his lies about them became famous when he was prosecuting Bill Clinton for committing adultery and lying about it. Surely history will remember him for his incredible gall more than for anything else.

Hyde was a demagogic charlatan, who played the Clinton impeachment like a parlor game, never considering the long-term implications of his mischeif. Throughout the proceedings, he carried himself like a man who expected his likeness to be on a coin someday. His sniveling smirk seemed to say "look at me! I've brought the government to a standstill with my cute little stunt." Lord only knows where such souls spend eternity.

Good riddance to Mr. "Youthful Indiscretion".

I hate to be the one that brings negative thoughts but after reading some of the sitting republican's praises of Henry Hyde I have to ask why they didn't learn anything from the Great Man.
You will never see my name praising very many Republicans but please don't smear his name with phony comments such as above.
I'd give a weeks pay to see todays crooked, mindless politicians stand face to face with Mr Hyde and try to BS him into believing some half hearted story that few believe.

It was kind of weird, but when I woke up this morning Henry Hyde, the Clinton impeachment, and his hipocrisy came to my mind for some of odd reason. I then go online and check the HuffPo and I read this article. Anyway, I think this man was a hypocrite when it came to the Clinton impeachment. He was also vindictive in that he said it was payback for Nixon. Well, now he will be judge for his actions where ever he is; either in purgatory or the inner circle of hell. I do not like to take ill of the dead, but this man deserves to pay for his sins and harmful actions. May God have mercy and forgive his soul.

I'm sorry, but by the time of the Clinton impeachment hearings, Henry Hyde had evolved into an insufferable gasbag pontificating endlessly about the play "A Man For All Seasons," apparently unaware of the discrepencies between the fictitional Thomas Moore and the actual historical figure, who was personally responsible for the deaths of many Protestants during the reign of King Henry VIII.

I won't miss him at all.

I'll bet right now he's sitting on God's big white porch, with a mint julep in his hand, watching the slaves work out in the hot sun, and saying something like "Lawd, it show is an honuh bein here with you in Paradise. Thank you for standin right by my side when I tried to halt all the lawsuits against the tobacca industry. Ah also know'd you was with me when I led the proceedins against that lyin' fornicator Bill Clinton and ah thank you most kindly for forgivin' my ah, youthful indiscretions.

Henry 'Hippo-cryte' Hyde will ONLY be remembered for his half-hearted effort to impeach Clinton. If at all.

I'm surprised you could remove yourself from kissing obama's behind long enough to do anything else. aren't you missing valuable campaign time for Barry ?

I see no mention of Clyde Federal Savings. Hyde was a bigger crook than Nixon ever hoped to be. At least Dick denied it; Hyde got the law changed to dodge responsibility for his looting the public treasury. He could not have been more self-serving: an Illinois political tradition!

His memorial should be a coat hanger. What a wretched excuse for a human being!

My only regret is that this despicable clown didn't croak 30 years ago. His two faced protestations about civility in the legislature are laughable, and his tenure is one of the reasons this country's "democracy" cannot function anymore. And to top it off with the most disgraceful effort ever, the impeachment trial, while he himself was free to engage in affairs, shows what a hypocrite he was.

rot in hell, jerk off! good riddance!

Let's not forget that he was the man sent billions of dollars overseas...Representative Hyde and Democrat, Tom Lantos (D-CA), authored America's worldwide response to the HIV/AIDS crisis in 2003 and the associated landmark foreign assistance legislation.


He died last night, this renaissance man, in his 84th year. The encomiums from friends and adversaries alike are all over the tv news, talk shows, the newspapers.
Brilliant, they say he was. Eloquent orator, powerfully effective in political compromise, a consummate gentleman, rapier wit always moderated with charity.
Yet, there was vicious contumely in the blogs and reader comments, the hatred of every thing this good man stood for and accomplished.
The Hyde Amendment draws heaviest fire: no tax money to kill babies in abortions. In the face of a self indulgent and corrupt culture, Hyde rose in unshakable defense of life, in the rule of our nation’s law, the right to life. He prevails still and “they” hate him for it. Viciously.
Then there was his outrageous leadership during the impeachment of president Clinton. Though intrinsically reluctant to prosecute a president of his nation, Hyde led the eight manager-prosecutors through the painful process of establishing beyond doubt
Clinton’s obstruction of justice and perjury. Clinton, popular with many Americans to whom freedom means self indulgence, no restraint, resented deeply the man who would impose the rule of law on their president. And they were validated by a corrupt majority of US Senators, who having one by one raised their hand in solemn oath to uphold the Constitution, immediately proceeded to acquit, to declare “innocent”, this criminal president. Politics stood higher than Hyde’s and America’s rule of law. Hyde was and is anathema.
The liberal culture, exonerating all faults in their worship of self indulgent freedom, gleefully dug up a serious mistake of Hyde’s some 30 years before the Clinton trial. He was threatened with its revelation, the gross embarrassment, the unmasking that would label him a hypocrite. “Back off, Hyde.” With penetrating eagle’s gaze, Henry looked them in their watery eyes and declared himself, like all men, a sinner who sinned, sought his Savior’s forgiveness (O felix culpa) and proceeded to his duty, with dignity and courage.
In the Congress, Henry was incomparable. A man respected because his virtue as a man of grace and integrity. Yet, the hate spewing non-admirers in blog and print front and center point to his failing as a human being. They miss the great reality that the whole of life measures a man before a just God and His world. Henry Hyde, ready to serve always as he did, his God and his fellowmen (especially constituents like me), a man of virtue,

Jerry Urbik

Around our house he was known as "Henrietta," because he looked like a huge fat lady. We never took him seriously. His stands on women's rights, the insane costly impeachment he championed cost him any credibility. He will go down in history as nothing, because he blew it as a person. Cheaters never win.

Henry Hyde fought steadfastly against two of the greatest evils of our time--abortion, and the Clinton crime family. God reward him for it!

The pure hatred, vitriol and flood of emotional illogic represents all that Henry Hyde was not; Thank God. Like Henry, I do not hate these liberals but I do feel sorry for them. Perhaps the parents of these people should ask their schools for a refund.


Seems a lot of people have a lot of hate. I bet they are the same ones who preach about every one loving and understanding each other.

I did not vote for President Clinton and I would not vote for Senator Clinton but I always refer to them by their titles .

I think that Mr Hyde was a good man. He served his country in a war and in Congress. Hr had his faults, we all do.

" Let he who is with out sin throw the first stone" . Pretty good way to live.

I've more or less been doing nothing to speak of. I've just been staying at home waiting for something to happen. Today was a loss. My life's been really bland today, but so it goes.,

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on November 29, 2007 10:38 AM.

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