The Score: Barbara Bush, Tom Garrett, and Sgt. Stubby
This week on The Score: we remember First Lady Barbara Bush, have a conversation with Virginia Congressman Tom Garrett, and hear a review of a new animated feature film about World War One.
Earlier this week, the world learned of the passing of former First Lady Barbara Bush in Houston at the age of 92. Nearly unique among first ladies, she shares with Abigail Adams the distinction of being both the spouse of a President – George H.W. Bush – and the mother of a President – George W. Bush.
On the morning after Mrs. Bush passed away, I spoke with presidential scholar Barbara Perry at the Miller Center for Public Affairs at the University of Virginia. Professor Perry — author of Rose Kennedy: The Life and Times of a Political Matriarch and Jacqueline Kennedy: First Lady of the New Frontier — knew Barbara Bush personally and shared her insights about how the late First Lady fits into recent history.
To start, I asked Dr. Perry about how Barbara Bush distinguished herself among recent presidential spouses.
Thomas A. Garrett was elected in 2016 to represent Virginia’s Fifth Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives. He previously served in the Virginia State Senate. This past Tuesday, I visited his office on Capitol Hill in Washington to ask him about current issues, legislation he has introduced in Congress, and bills he is supporting as a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the Committee on Homeland Security.
To start off our interview, I asked Congressman Garrett about a recent editorial in the Roanoke Times that drew a contrast between the way Congress operates in Washington and how the General Assembly operates in Richmond.
Congressman Garrett also answered questions about how, in light of the recent U.S. missile attack on Syria, Congress can – or should – reassert its constitutional authority on making war (sometimes called congressional war powers), an issue raised frequently by Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, Michigan Congressman Justin Amash, and Virginia Senator Tim Kaine, among others.
After Congressman Garrett took a few minutes to visit with some Virginia high school students who had gathered in his office waiting room, we continued our conversation, turning to the topic of current politics. That morning, Pennsylvania Congressman Charlie Dent had announced he is retiring from the House even before next November’s elections. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan had also announced his retirement, sparking a flurry of speculation over who will replace him and the dominos of Republican leadership in the House of Representatives.
We also talked about bipartisanship and how well the Virginia congressional delegation gets along, even across party lines, ending with Congressman Garrett’s self-assessment of his prospects for re-election to a second term in the vast territory of the Fifth District.
This week’s “From the Archives” feature is an interview from October 2010 with George Mason University professor Colin Dueck about his book, Hard Line: The Republican Party and U.S. Foreign Policy Since World War II. In this conversation, I asked him about the different approaches that conservatives and libertarians take toward foreign policy. This was recorded after a lecture and discussion at The Heritage Foundation in Washington.
Finally, The Score’s resident film critic, Tim Hulsey, tells us about Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero, a new animated movie, based on a true story about a stray dog who joins his new master on the battlefields of the First World War. For his brave actions, the Sergeant Stubby of the movie’s title is still recognized as the most decorated dog in American history. Sgt. Stubby stars the voice talents of Helena Bonham Carter, Logan Lerman, and Gerard Depardieu, among others. Check your local listings for showtimes. Tim saw the movie in Richmond and it may be coming to a cinema near you.
Next week: audio clips from Senator Tim Kaine’s speech about replacing the War Powers Resolution, hosted by the Miller Center in the Rotunda of the University of Virginia.