[Congressional Record Volume 140, Number 147 (Tuesday, November 29, 1994)]
[Senate]
[Page S]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]


[Congressional Record: November 29, 1994]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

 
 HONORING TWO MEMBERS OF THE GEORGIA DELEGATION, BUDDY DARDEN AND DON 
                                JOHNSON

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. (Mr. Browder). Under a previous order of the 
House, the gentleman from Georgia [Mr. Rowland] is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. ROWLAND. Mr. Speaker, tonight I want to honor two Members of the 
Georgia delegation, Buddy Darden and Don Johnson.
  Just let me say a word or two about Buddy Darden:
  He finished earning his AB and law degrees at the University of 
Georgia, and by that time he had already been elected president of the 
student body and had served internships with Senator Richard Russel and 
Congressman Carl Vinson, the long-time chairman of the Senate and House 
Armed Services Committees. Now this was a really great preparation that 
he had in entering into his career and public life, and I do not think 
that anyone can do it any better than that.
  Buddy won his first election within 5 years after graduation, running 
successfully for district attorney in his home county. He was then 
elected to the Georgia House of Representatives, and in 1983, Mr. 
Speaker, was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from 
Georgia's Seventh District where he had served in a number of committee 
assignments, including the Committee on Armed Services and the 
Committee on Appropriations.
  I had the opportunity to serve with Buddy Darden for 6 years in the 
Georgia House of Representatives and came to know Buddy and his wife, 
Lillian, very well. My wife, Luella, and Buddy and Lillian often were 
together then, as we have been since he had been in Washington.
  Mr. Speaker, I am going to miss Buddy in the U.S. House of 
Representatives a great deal. I have decided not to run again myself, 
and so it is with somewhat bittersweet memories, I guess one might say, 
bearing in mind the fact that I will not be seeing Buddy again here, 
but sweet in the fact that we will be doing something else in our 
lives, possible seeing one another in Atlanta.
  Don Johnson earned his law degree from the University of Georgia, and 
within a year he was named staff attorney for the U.S. House Committee 
on Ways and Means where he helped to draft the 1974 Trade Reform Act. 
This was not a bad training ground for him either.
  After serving in the Air Force and earning a master's degree from the 
London School of Economics, Don returned home and was elected to three 
terms in the Georgia Senate where he served as one of the Governor's 
four leaders and as chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. In 
1992, Mr. Speaker, he was elected to the 10th District Congressional 
seat where he has served on the Committee on Armed Services and the 
Committee on Science, Space and Technology.
  Having worked with Buddy for these 12 years, and Don for 2 years, I 
know that they are two individuals who have fought hard for the causes 
that they represented and in the best interests of the country and the 
areas of Georgia that sent them here. They have made many contributions 
as legislators and will be remembered for their dedication to service.
  So, Mr. Speaker, I want to say to Buddy and Don, I have appreciated 
our working relationship within the Georgia delegation. You have really 
provided your great leadership. You always are cooperative in working 
with other Members of the delegation, and from a personal standpoint I 
want you to know that I will always treasure the service that we have 
had together in this body that will soon come to an end. I know that 
this will be a new beginning for both of you, that public service is in 
your blood, and I will not be surprised at all to see you return 
sometime in the not too dist ant future to public service again where 
you will continue to serve your community, your State and your country.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from Mississippi [Mr. 
Montgomery].
  Mr. MONTGOMERY. Mr. Speaker, I would like to commend the gentleman 
from Georgia [Mr. Rowland] for taking this special order, this 5 
minutes on two gentlemen which he has just mentioned, and I would also 
like to say, I've enjoyed very much serving with you in the Congress. 
You have been a great help to us, especially in the Committee on 
Veterans' Affairs where you chaired the Subcommittee on Hospitals and 
Health Care which is the largest health care system in the world. You 
did an outstanding job.
  And to these gentlemen from Georgia, Mr. Speaker, I say, We wish you 
the best.
  Mr. ROWLAND. Mr. Speaker, I say to the gentleman, It's been a 
wonderful experience for me as well, and I really appreciate that very 
much.

                             {time}   2000

  Mr. Speaker, let me say that the 12 years that I have spent here have 
truly been a fantastic experience. I have received a letter today from 
Clarence Brown, who is president of the Historical Society of the U.S. 
Capitol, and he advises in that letter that as of this point, there 
have only been 9,565 individuals who have had the high honor and 
privilege to serve in this House of Representatives. So when you 
consider that, based on the population of this country since its 
inception more than 200 years ago, one would realize what a high honor 
it is to have served in this body.
  I was asked today by a reporter what was the thing that distressed me 
most about the 12 years that I have served here, and I answered him the 
apparent low esteem that the public has for this institution. It is 
hard to understand why the institution has been denigrated so much by 
the public.
  Oh, I know what the political process is and that you debate and that 
changes are made, and these changes that have been made have been 
wrought, I am sure, for some good reason, and we will find that out in 
the future.
  But it is not only this Congress, but it is the institutions in our 
country that seem to be under attack, and it distresses me a great deal 
to see this happen.
  I have had many town meetings in my district, and I have asked the 
question at the end of these town meetings on frequent occasions, how 
many of you want to leave this country? No one really raises their 
hand. There are a lot of people that want to get in this country, but 
no one wants to leave this country.
  But that is the way that our country is. It gives you the freedom to 
say the things that you want to say about it, as long as you do not 
threaten the overthrow of the Government, and I guess that is what 
makes our country strong.
  I do hope that the public will understand that the people that serve 
here for the most part are dedicated, hard-working people. They are 
like any cross-section of any group in our country. They come here and 
work hard, many at a great sacrifice, and with almost without exception 
most of them do a really good job.
  We will see over the coming years what takes place. I have not lost 
faith at all that our country will still be a beacon of hope and 
liberty for people throughout the world. We are still looked at by 
other countries as the leading nation in the world, and that is the 
reason that we are called on so often.
  So it is with a sense of sadness that I leave here, because of the 
good friends I have made, and because of being involved in the process. 
But I am looking forward to a new career now, to doing something else, 
and I look forward to returning to this wonderful institution.
  Mr. LEWIS of Georgia. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to a 
distinguished colleague and a great American, Congressman George 
(Buddy) Darden. I want to take a moment to honor this Member--a man 
whom I greatly respect.
  Since 1983, Congressman Darden has represented the 6th Congressional 
District of Georgia. This Congressman has given more than 100 percent 
effort in representing the constituents of his district. The people of 
the 6th District and the State of Georgia have been blessed with the 
leadership of George (Buddy) Darden.
  Congressman Darden personifies the very best in the American 
tradition. He has dedicated his life to public service, first as a 
county prosecutor, second as a member of the Georgia House of 
Representatives, and third as a Member of the U.S. House of 
Representatives.
  The accomplishments of George (Buddy) Darden are many. I have known 
this man for several years. I know him well. He is a good and decent 
man. He is a leader in a truest sense of the word. He is a crusader.
  George (Buddy) Darden has been able to organize the unorganized. He 
gave many hope in a time of hopelessness. His work and his cause 
enhanced the dignity of humanity everywhere.
  George (Buddy) Darden is persistent and consistent. He has had a 
vision of a new America, a better America. He had a dream of what 
America could become. He has kept his eyes on the prize.
  Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to a distinguished colleague 
and a great American, Congressman Don Johnson. I want to take a moment 
to honor this Member--a man whom I greatly admire. We honor one of the 
most able Members of the House of Representatives. The people of 
Georgia, those who believe in fairness, civil and human rights, and 
consumer rights will miss Congressman Johnson.
  He will be deeply missed, not only by the people of the 10th District 
of Georgia whom he served so well, but by people throughout the State 
of Georgia. He was a champion for the weak, for those who did not have 
much of a voice and for those who had very little power.
  I have known and admired the good work of Don Johnson. He came to the 
Congress in 1993 after serving with distinction in the George State 
Senate. During the past 2 years, we have had an opportunity to chat on 
many occasions about issues and problems confronting America and the 
world.
  My friend and my colleague, Congressman Johnson, took courageous 
stands on many of the votes he cast in the Congress. He was a 
Congressman who followed his conscience and did what he believed was 
fair and just.
  Don Johnson leaves this institution having made an enormous 
contribution to democracy. He has had a vision of a new America, a 
better America. He had a dream of what America could become. He has 
kept his eyes on the prize.
  Mr. BISHOP. Mr. Speaker, as we gavel the 103d Congress to a close 
tonight, the House of Representatives and the Georgia delegation lose 
two of the South's most progressive Democrats and hard working 
legislators. Congressman Buddy Darden, of Marietta, GA, and Don 
Johnson, of Royston, GA, leave us tonight as fellow Members of the 
House, however, they leave behind a terrific list of accomplishments 
that their successors, I am sure, will have a difficult time trying to 
match.
  In November 1983, a special election was called to fill the unexpired 
term of the late Congressman Larry McDonald, who had been killed in the 
Korean Air Lines Flight 007 shot down by the Soviet Union. Once in 
office, Buddy Darden carried the torch held by many Georgia legislators 
like Carl Vinson and Sam Nunn with his work on the Armed Services 
Committee. On that panel, Buddy was able to work hard for the needs and 
interests of the defense industry, like the Lockheed airplane factory 
and aeronautical center located in his district, as well as the various 
defense installations located throughout the State, like Fort Benning--
home of the infantry--near my hometown of Columbus, GA.
  In 1992, Buddy was elected to serve on the House Appropriations 
Committee, keeping close to the needs of all Georgians whose 
livelihoods rely on the defense industry by joining the Defense 
Subcommittee.
  A fellow alumnus of the Georgia State House of Representatives and a 
graduate of the University of Georgia, former president of the Marietta 
Kiwanis Club and current president of the Richard B. Russell 
Foundation, the people of the peach State lose a tremendous leader and 
coalition builder with the departure of Mr. Buddy Darden. I wish Buddy, 
his wife, Lillian and their two children, Christy and George, all of 
God's blessings and the best of luck in whatever opportunities the Good 
Lord provides them.
  Buddy, you have been a tremendous help to me in my first term and an 
exceptional legislative role model. If there is any silver lining in 
your loss, it is that you have served the people of Georgia to the 
fullest and have assisted your fellow colleagues in the House with 
selflessness for the greater good of the State. Buddy, thank you.
  I first worked with State Senator Don Johnson when I was elected to 
the upper body of the State legislature in 1990. Senator Johnson, who 
had been in the Senate since 1987, was eager to work with the newly-
elected State Senators, following the tradition of many other Georgia 
legislators as a coalition builder. In the State Senate, Don Johnson 
was widely recognized as one of a new breed of progressive State 
leaders who fought for budget reform and open and ethical government. 
While in the State legislature, Don Johnson helped bring toll-free 
countywide calling to people in rural Georgia, including many people I 
now represent.
  In 1992, Don and I joined a newly elected group of freshmen 
legislators to serve in the House of Representatives, carrying with us 
our similar ideology and desire to change the way Washington and 
welfare and health care work. The son of an immortalized prosecutor of 
the Ku Klux Klan in Hart County, GA and another graduate of the 
University of Georgia, Congressman Johnson took the torch carried by 
his senior Georgia legislators by obtaining a seat on the House Arms 
Services Panel in order to protect that industry on which so many 
Georgians thrive.
  I wish Don and his wife, Suzanne, their children, Clete, Anna and 
Alex, all of the best as they return home to Georgia following a 
successful term as an exemplary Member of the House of Representatives, 
a Member Georgians can be proud having served them.
  Mr. Bevill. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to my good 
friend and colleague, Congressman Buddy Darden of Georgia.
  I have known Buddy since he came to Washington in 1983 and have 
always respected his integrity and ability as a Member of Congress. 
Buddy has served the Seventh Congressional District of Georgia with 
distinction and honor for the last 10 years. During that time he has 
accomplished a great deal for his constituents and even more for our 
country.
  I have become especially close to Buddy during the 103d Congress. 
These past 2 years he has served with me on the House Appropriations 
Committee as well as occupying the office across the hall from mine in 
the Rayburn Building. Interestingly enough, the Seventh District of 
Georgia is adjacent to the Fourth District of Alabama, which I 
represent. So, Buddy and I have worked across the hall, across the 
table in committee meetings, and have often joined together to work on 
issues important to both of our congressional districts. I will 
certainly miss seeing Buddy at home and in meetings, but I will 
especially miss his company walking to the Capitol every day.
  Throughout his career in Congress, Buddy Darden has always done what 
he felt was best for his constituents, his State, and our Nation. He 
has also never been afraid to stand up for what he believes. Whenever a 
person of Buddy's caliber serves in the House of Representatives, the 
entire institution is strengthened. We will certainly be affected by 
his absence in the 104th Congress. I join the rest of my colleagues in 
wishing Buddy all the best as he leaves us.
  We all know that Buddy will be successful in whatever he chooses to 
pursue. I would like him to know that I have enjoyed our friendship and 
look forward to seeing him often in years to come.
  Mrs. FOWLER. Mr. Speaker: I rise this evening to pay tribute to my 
good friend Representative Buddy Darden of Georgia, who will be leaving 
us at the end of this Congress. Mr. Darden is a man of great character 
and ability, and he has served the people of his district and our 
Nation well.
  During more than a decade of service in the Congress, Mr. Darden has 
gained the respect of friend and foe alike by his hard work and 
knowledgeable approach to legislation. He has also gained the affection 
of colleagues on both sides of the aisle because of his warm 
personality and forthright manner. He has established a reputation as a 
force to be reckoned with, and his staunch advocacy of a strong defense 
has never wavered
  I have known Buddy Darden since we were both interns on the Hill in 
the 1960's, and I respect and admire him greatly. He is a true southern 
gentleman, and his many friends, including this one, will miss him a 
great deal. I wish him all the best in the future.
  Mr. HUGHES. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to my esteemed 
colleague, George ``Buddy'' Darden, who has been an exemplary member of 
the U.S. House of Representatives.
  Buddy has served his constituents in Georgia's seventh District with 
dedication and distinction, and can be very proud of his legislative 
accomplishments and his record of service. Buddy was not a member of 
Congress seeking personal gain or national headlines, but was here 
because he wanted to serve, and he genuinely cared about the issues 
important to his constituents and to the country. I am convinced that 
the public would hold Congress in much higher esteem if they fully 
appreciated the fact that we have Representatives like Buddy Darden who 
possess such integrity, intellect, compassion, and dedication. Buddy's 
departure represents a loss for this institution and he will be sorely 
missed.
  On a personal level, Buddy Darden is a top-notch, first-class 
American, whom I am privileged to call my good friend. Senor Darden, my 
amigo in Spanish class, helped make learning a new language at 8 a.m. 
enjoyable. El es my gracioso, simpatico, y gentil.
  As I reflect back on my years in Congress, upon my own retirement, it 
is the solid working relationships and good friendships I forged with 
legislators like Buddy Darden that I will treasure most.
  I wish only the very best of health, happiness, and everything life 
has to offer for Buddy and Lillian as they embark on this next stage in 
their lives together. Buena suerte!
  Mr. MONTGOMERY. I want to thank Dr. Roy Rowland for taking time to 
pay tribute to our two departing colleagues from the peach State, Buddy 
Darden and Don Johnson.
  Buddy and I have been good friends ever since he came to the 
Congress. I have been to his district and he has been to mine. He and I 
worked on defense issues when Buddy was a member of the Armed Services 
Committee from 1983 to the of the 102d Congress, and then when he went 
to the Appropriations Committee to serve on the Defense Subcommittee. 
One issue on which we have particularly worked well together is to 
maintain production of the C-130 aircraft and keep it a vital part of 
our airlift capability.
  I want to wish Buddy and his family the best as they move on to the 
next chapter in their lives. Whatever path they take, I know Buddy will 
do just fine.
  I really have enjoyed getting to know Don Johnson and working with 
him over these past 2 years. Don and I worked on defense issues on the 
Armed Services Committee. We served together on the Installations and 
Facilities Subcommittee.
  Having served as a staffer on Capitol Hill earlier in his career as 
well as being an Air Force veteran, Don had a good insight into the 
legislative process. That enabled him to be very involved in the 103d 
Congress on defense matters in the committee.
  I salute Don for the courageous votes he made and am confident we 
will hear from him again in the public arena in the years to come.
  Mr. RAHALL. Mr. Speaker, I rise to pay tribute to Representative Don 
Johnson, Represenative of the 10th District of Georgia.
  Representative Johnson served during the 103rd Congress with the same 
dedication and commitment he brought to Georgia politics when he was 
elected to the State Senate in 1987. During his three terms in the 
Georgia Senate, he was known for his commitment to budget reform and 
open and ethical government. It was through his hard work that brought 
toll-free county-wide calling to rural Georgia, and the people of the 
10th District sent him to Washington so that he could continue to serve 
the unique needs of a rural population.
  A native of northeast Georgia, Representative Johnson was educated in 
the public schools of Franklin County, and a graduate of the University 
of Georgia with a Bachelor's Degree in History. He went on to earn a 
law degree from the University's law school in 1973, and a Masters 
Degree from the London School of Economics in 1978.
  Representative Johnson was no stranger to Washington when he came 
here to represent the 10th District, having served as staff attorney 
for the House Ways and Means Committee, where he helped draft the Trade 
Reform Act of 1974.
  He served ably as a Member of the House Armed Services and Science, 
Space and Technology Committees during his tenure here, and his 
expertise will be sorely missed.
  I wish to convey to Representative Johnson, his wife Suzanne, and his 
children Clete, Anna and Alex, my best wishes for them in whatever 
paths their lives may take in the future.
  Mr. RAHALL. Mr. Speaker, I rise to pay tribute to Representative 
Buddy Darden, our departing friend and colleague, as he prepares to 
leave the House of Representatives where he has served the citizens of 
Georgia's Seventh District for over a decade.
  When Buddy came to the House, he was really no stranger to Congress. 
While in college, he served as an intern for both Senator Richard B. 
Russell and Representative Carl Vinson, who was then the legendary 
chairman of the Armed Services Committee. His interest in government 
services was thoroughly whetted during these internships, which led him 
to become student body President at the University of Georgia.
  Graduated with a J.D. from the University of Georgia in 1967, he 
served as Cobb County District Attorney from 1973 to 1977, and 
represented Cobb County as a Member of the Georgia House of 
Representatives from 1981 until his appointment in 1983 to fill the 
unexpired term of the late Larry McDonald in the U.S. House of 
Representatives. Buddy was subsequently re-elected to the House in 
1984, 1988, 1990, and 1992.
  From 1983 to the end of the 102d Congress, Buddy served on the House 
Armed Services Committee, following in the footsteps of his mentor Carl 
Vinson, as well as on the Committee on the Interior and Insular 
Affairs.
  Beginning in 1992, he was elected to serve on the House Committee on 
Appropriations, and during his tenure in the House, he also served on 
the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, informally known as the 
House Ethics Committee.
  Buddy's service in the House of Representatives has been a period of 
fierce dedication to his duties as a Member of Congress, living up to 
the duties and responsibilities such Membership entails, and his 
commitment to the institution was second only to his dedication to the 
well-being of the people he served in Georgia's Seventh District.
  He has served with honor, winning the admiration and friendship of 
his colleagues through his hard work, his attention to detail, and his 
willingness always to listen to his colleagues, hear their views, and 
act upon their needs, giving them the same time and attention as he did 
his own.
  We will miss him; the talents and ability he brought to this body 
will be hard to replace.
  I wish Buddy Darden well, and would like to convey to him, his wife 
Lillian, and his children Christy and George, the very best in whatever 
paths their lives may take in the future.
  Mr. STOKES. Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my colleague from Georgia, 
Mr. Rowland, for reserving time for us to pay tribute to members of the 
Georgia Congressional Delegation who will be departing the Congress at 
the close of this Legislative Session. I rise today to join my 
colleagues in paying tribute to our good friend, Buddy Darden.
  Prior to his election to Congress in 1983, Buddy Darden was a Cobb 
County District Attorney. In the House of Representatives, Buddy has 
done an outstanding job of representing Georgia's Seventh Congressional 
District in the House. His constituency and, indeed, the Nation, has 
benefitted from his leadership and strong commitment to public service.
  Mr. Speaker, Buddy Darden has served as a member of the House 
Appropriations Committee and its subcommittees on Defense and Treasury, 
and Postal Service and General Government. His legislative career has 
also included service on the House Armed Services Committee, the 
Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs, and the Committee on 
Standards of Official Conduct (Ethics Committee). Buddy Darden's 
legislative skills have earned him the respect and admiration of his 
colleagues.
  I am proud to note that Buddy Darden served as a member of the House 
Ethics Committee when I chaired the panel. He exercised sound judgment 
and wisdom in the committee's deliberations. Buddy was also very 
capable and fair in assuming this difficult assignment.
  Mr. Speaker, Buddy Darden is a good friend whom I greatly admire and 
respect. As he departs this Chamber, I join his colleagues and many 
friends in extending our best wishes to Buddy. He will always be 
remembered for his service to the Nation and the State of Georgia.
  Ms. PELOSI. Mr. Speaker, I rise tonight to join my colleagues in 
honoring Representative Buddy Darden on his retirement from the House 
of Representatives. Buddy has represented the 7th District of Georgia 
with distinction since winning a special election in 1983 and the 
people of north Georgia have lost a true champion in Congress.
  Buddy's interest in government was nurtured through internships with 
Senator Richard B. Russell and Representative Carl Vinson, who was then 
Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. When he came to 
Congress in 1983, Buddy followed in Carl Vinson's footsteps by serving 
on the Armed Services Committee until the close of the 102d Congress.
  During Buddy's tenure in Congress, the family tradition continued as 
his son worked as a Capitol Tour Guide. I am proud to have been his 
colleague on both the Appropriations Committee and the Ethics 
Committee. He has made my service on these committees more enjoyable 
through his good works, genial nature and sense of humor.
  It has been a real privilege to serve with Buddy in Congress and I 
hope that he remains actively involved in public service. I join my 
colleagues in wishing him and his family a rich and rewarding life 
outside of the halls of Congress.

                          ____________________