Arizona Sen. John McCain bid seatmate and fellow Republican Jon Kyl farewell in the U.S. Senate this week.
Kyl is retiring in less than two weeks, and the past few day’s he’s also been giving his goodbyes.
McCain says he’s been impressed during the last 18 years with Kyl’s work ethic. Kyl reads every bill and writes his own, McCain says, instead of leaving that work to staff.
McCain, in a speech on the floor of the Senate, called Kyl a “senator’s senator,” and said Kyl has many qualities McCain strives for.
“His patience, for example, his meticulous preparation and thoroughness, are, I’m sorry to say, not qualities I’ll be remembered for, but they’ve been indispensible to the people of our state," McCain said. "It’s a fortunate thing for them, and for me, that states are represented by two senators and that Arizonans have had Jon Kyl here to compensate for my shortcomings.”
Kyl himself took the time to reflect on his career in the Senate.
“I’m deeply proud of everything we’ve accomplished, from tax relief and welfare reform, to missile defense and nuclear policy, not to mention things of primary importance to my state," he said.
"But I also understand that political victories can be ephemeral, because in a democracy, debate over these issues never really ends, it’s always ongoing.”
New senators are sworn in January 3, and that’s when Republican Jeff Flake will leave the U.S. House to take his seat as Arizona’s 11th U.S. senator.