U.S. Senator Thad Cochran issued his farewell statement to the Senate during time set aside by the Senate Majority Leader for Senators to recognize Cochran’s service.
“Mr. President, I appreciate the opportunity to express my deep gratitude for the honor given to me by the people of Mississippi to represent them in Washington,” Cochran said. “I leave the Senate with confidence that our enduring Constitution guards our country from human error, empowers our citizens to achieve greatness, and shines as a beacon of freedom and liberty for the world.”
He said he is optimistic about the future of our great nation, and in the United States Senate’s role in determining that future.
“I am going back to Yazoo City and to my old home on a rural free-delivery route. I want to get up again each morning as I hear the rooster’s crow… and as night and the time for bed approaches, I will listen to the greatest chorus of voices that man ever heard, music that will charm me and make me ready for repose, the voices of my mockingbirds trilling in the trees,” said Cochran. “And in that way I want to live the rest of my life, and when the end comes, I hope to be carried out of the house by my neighbors and laid to rest among my people. Now, some may say that is not a very wonderful future, all of this I have mapped out for myself, but I say there is merit in calm retirement… Perhaps it is a sign that I ought to retire, for retirement brings repose, and repose allows a kindly judgment of all things.”
He said he will now return to his beloved Mississippi and his family and friends there and will miss this stately Chamber and this city, but won’t miss power or politics.
“I will miss people—you, my colleagues and I will treasure your courtesy and kindness,” said Cochran. “And I trust if your travels bring you to Oxford, Mississippi, you will not hesitate to visit and join me for a refreshment on the porch and we can listen to the mockingbirds together.”
U.S. Senator Roger Wicker also delivered a Senate address honoring his friend and colleague.
“Because of Thad Cochran, our nation’s defense is stronger today. Because of the efforts of our colleague from Mississippi, my senior Senator, Americans are healthier today and will continue to be healthier,” said Wicker. “American agriculture is stronger today because of the efforts of this ‘quiet persuader’ in the field of agriculture. Our economy as a whole is stronger because of the many efforts of Senator Thad Cochran and, before him, Representative Thad Cochran in the United States House and in the United States Senate.”
Wicker stated that he is just grateful for all that Cochran has done.
“So, Mr. President, I say to my friend Thad that we appreciate the fact that he has been strong in will,” said Wicker. “And though time and fate have happened to Thad Cochran and will happen to me and to all of us, what abides is the legacy that he’s left of being a quiet persuader, of being a person of accomplishment, of being a gentleman who has made this country and its citizens better off.”
Mitch McConnell, who has served as Senate Majority Leader since 2015 said, “For all his staff, Thad took the time to pin a detailed memo laying out high expectations for serving constituents and treating everyone with dignity, and that temperament led to a litany of of accomplishments.”
He added that Mississippians knew that in Thad they had a quiet persuader, a steady work horse, and a dogged advocate who almost never made a fuss, but almost always made a difference.