Kansas’ U.S. senators and representatives have unanimously signed onto legislation aimed at awarding former Sen. Bob Dole with the Congressional Gold Medal, Sen. Pat Roberts’ office announced Monday.
Roberts and U.S. Rep. Lynn Jenkins, both Kansas Republicans, introduced bills in the Senate and House, respectively, to award Dole the medal in “recognition for his service to the nation as a soldier, legislator and statesman,” according to a release from Roberts’ office. The medal is “the most distinguished honor and the highest civilian honor given by the Congress,” the release says.
The bills are also co-sponsored by the rest of the Kansas Congressional delegation and Democrats and Republicans who worked with Dole in the Senate.
“He has served our country in countless ways, spending his whole life serving Kansas and the nation,” Roberts said of Dole in a release. “From his days in Russell, Kansas, his service in World War II, and his dedication to spending his life as a public servant, Bob Dole embodies the American spirit.”
Jenkins called Dole a “dear friend” and a “true statesman” in the release.
“Senator Dole has spent his entire life serving Kansans and this great country,” Jenkins said in the release. “Additionally, after retiring from public office, he continued his important work to help our veterans get the care they deserve, curb child hunger and poverty and several other initiatives.”
Dole, a World War II veteran and former senator, turned 94 on Saturday.
Dole served as a U.S. senator from Kansas from 1969 until 1996 and helped pass the Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990. He ran for president in 1996 against President Bill Clinton.
Dole was also awarded the Presidential Citizens Medal in 1989 by President Ronald Reagan and awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1997 by President Bill Clinton. Dole established the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics at the University of Kansas.