WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Senate delivered farewell addresses for senators ending their service this term, including Mark Udall, D-Colo.
Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., and Udall’s cousin, Sen. Tom Udall, D-N.M., spoke about Mark Udall’s merits and hard work as a senator and throughout his life.
Udall worked for two years for Colorado’s state government and served as a U.S. House representative for 10 years. He also completed a six-year term in the Senate.
“One of the things that Mark has been great at is working with the other side and being bipartisan,” Tom Udall said.
Bennet also said Mark Udall has been crucial to fighting the gridlock in Congress on several issues.
“Mark Udall has fought for Colorado families in the most constructive way possible,” Bennet said, “by pushing constructive solutions but never ever to achieve a partisan push.”
Bennet mentioned Udall’s involvement with the intelligence committee, leading him to speak out against the CIA earlier this week and against the National Security Agency.
“As everybody in this chamber knows, Mark has been a staunch defender of the rights we know and cherish,” Bennet said.
Bennet also paid tribute to Udall’s love for the outdoors and the work he and his wife, Maggie Fox, an environmental lawyer, has done for climate change. Bennet said that in addition to fighting for the environment, Udall summitted every mountain that exceeds 14,000 feet in Colorado.
Bennet visibly choked up on the Senate floor during his closing statement for Udall.
“Every one of us, for the sake of this institution,” he said, “would do well to live up to the example that Mark Udall has set.”
Tom Udall said: “One of the things that’s a real hallmark of Mark Udall’s service is the fact that he cares so much about his family.” .
According to Tom, Mark Udall flew home each weekend, prioritizing time with his family and his Colorado constituents.
“Mark, more than anything, loves the state of Colorado,” Tom Udall said. “He loves the people, he loves the outdoors, and he loves the landscape.”
Rep. Cory Gardner, R-Yuma, will be taking Mark Udall’s Senate seat in January.
Mark Udall was not available for comment.
email@example.com. Iulia Gheorghiu is a student at American University in Washington, D.C., and an intern for The Durango Herald.