For Our Children and Their Children .
(Delivered by Larry K Smith, former Administrative
Assistant to Senator McIntyre, at the Senator's funeral in
A Eulogy for Senator Thomas J. McIntyre
Children wherever we live will ask us about Tom McIntyre
and why they should remember him.
We might tell them about his remarkable Senatorial
achievements--laws he wrote, debates he won, causes he
But, above all, we should be sure to tell our children
about Tom McIntyre's most profound legacy--a legacy of
enduring values about public life.
We should be sure to tell our children that Tom McIntyre
pursued politics primarily as a matter of public
He believed one should run for office not for personal
gain, not out of a compulsion for celebrity, not to
bolster one's ego, but basically as a duty, a civic
responsibility. Politics, properly understood, is
therefore a calling, not a career.
Robert Frost told us how he, as a New Hampshire lad,
loved to climb birch trees--up a `snow-white truck toward
Heaven till the tree could bear no more . . .' Frost
remembered, `This climb will be good both going and coming
Washington is filled with driven ambitions who find only
But anyone who knew Tom McIntyre well understood that he
went to Washington, not to climb, but to serve. And his
heart was always here in New Hampshire--here in Laconia.
And he agreed with Frost, `One could do worse than being a
swinger of birches.'
We should also tell our children that Tom McIntyre
mastered the art of practical politics as a public
He believed that if an office is worth standing for, then
it is worth running for--to win. If a cause is worth
believing in, then it is worth working for--to prevail.
The deeper one's convictions about a cause, the greater
one's obligation to be effective. There is no room in this
tradition for political kibitzers, dilettantes, or summer
And Tom and Myrtle McIntyre's campaigns over the years
still stand as models of the practical political
We should also tell our children that Tom McIntyre's
legacy values integrity--insists on integrity.
To him, it meant telling the truth. It meant keeping
one's word. It meant standing up for one's conviction even
at personal cost. It meant respecting public office as a
public trust with standards of ethics and appearance
higher than even those set by law.
And let us celebrate today that throughout thirty years
of rock'm-sock'm New Hampshire politics, Tom McIntyre's
good name and the public's confidence in his integrity met
these high standards.
We should also tell our children that Tom McIntyre valued
the free competition of ideas.
For two hundred years Americans have understood that a
diversity of interests and a competition of ideas are
crucial to our liberty.
So Tom McIntyre spent his own earned political capital to
try to build a two-party system. He recruited young
talents all over New Hampshire and helped them into the
fray. Many are here today to honor him.
He also defended the integrity of this political
competition. He opposed those who
would stifle the free contest of ideas, those who would
emulsify the two parties, those who would insist on having
two parties in name, but one party in fact.
Let's also tell our children that Tom McIntyre's legacy
includes a politics of civility.
Civility--a fancy word--for Tom McIntyre's politics of
good cheer and gentleness. His campaigns--for all their
seriousness and sense of purpose--were fun. He campaigned
with elan, with a twinkle, and with an Irish song.
He also taught us to think well of others until there is
a reason not to. He tried his best not to use `mean words'
in his campaigns.
So Tim McIntyre's politics was not a politics for fear
which appealed to our darker sides. It was not a politics
of anger which took pleasure in inflicting pain. It was
not a politics of paranoia unable to distinguish between
friends and foe. It was not a politics of vengeance which
made all adversaries into enemies.
Think of his friendships with Norris Cotton and with
Warren Rudman. Their mutual respect transcended political
differences. Their friendships were models of civility
that gentled debates and campaigns.
And we should also be sure to tell our children Tom
McIntyre valued practicality.
Because Tom McIntyre was a practical man. He knew that
the true test of public policy is whether it works in
He loved to tell Washington how he, as Mayor of Laconia,
rejected the fire department's request for a ladder truck
several stories higher than the town's highest
Such pragmatism was for centuries America's central
philosophic tradition. Only recently have theoreticians
without practical experience begun to dominate policy
making. This may have made Tom McIntyre's practicality
rather unfashionable in some Washington seminars and
But he was right. And we need to tell our children.
The great Irish poet, W.B. Yeats (and Tom McIntyre loved
his Irish poets), summed it up:
God guard me from those thoughts men think
In the mind alone.
He that sings a lasting song
Thinks in a marrow bone.
Finally, above all, let's tell our children that the
passionate center of Tom McIntyre's political legacy was
his moral courage to defend the soul of our Republic--our
freedom--abroad and here at home.
He, along with millions of others, did this in
And here in New Hampshire in the 1970s, his ringing
defenses of the rule of law, the right of the other fellow
to be heard, and the right of all Americans to be free of
fear of intimidation were New Englander's love of liberty
in full flower.
And to do this required grit. It required true grit,
because others sat in silence.
Tom McIntyre's moral courage was all the more remarkable
because he, unlike many politicians, found no joy in a
fight, and because he, unlike the ideologies, lacked their
These public values--service, effectiveness, integrity,
the competition of ideas, civility, practicality and a
passion for liberty--I invite you now to add your own
favorite--were, of course, not invented by Tom McIntyre.
He never wrote them out. He would be the first to tell us
how he did not measure up to these standards. Nonetheless,
they were the heart of his witness as a public person and
the core of his beliefs as a private man.
And these are not partisan values. They are above party
and above personal political persuasion. In this respect,
we are all republicans; we are all democrats.
Henry Adams said, `No one can tell where a teacher's
influence stops.' This legacy of Tom McIntyre is similarly
enduring, because it is a set of values larger than his
career, yet nurtured and enhanced by his efforts to
So when we go home today and our children ask us about
Tom McIntyre, let's tell them about his legacy of values.
Let's sing these lasting songs in a marrow bone to them,
because these are values for our children.
They live for all the children of New Hampshire, and for
their children -- and for their children -- and for their
Obituary from The Washington Post
August 9, 1992
T. McIntyre Dies; Served in Senate
By Richard Pearson
Thomas J. McIntyre , 77, a New Hampshire Democrat who
served in the Senate from November 1962 until January
1979, died of pneumonia Aug. 8 at a hospital in West Palm
Beach, Fla. He had Alzheimer's disease.
He was elected to the Senate to fill the unexpired term
of Sen. H. Styles Bridges (R), who had died in office.
Sen. McIntyre won reelection in 1966 and 1972, then was
defeated in a race for a third full term in 1978 by
Republican Gordon J. Humphrey.
During his years in the Senate, Sen. McIntyre's committee
assignments included Government Operations; Banking,
Housing and Urban Affairs; and the District of Columbia
committees. But he probably was best known for his service
on the Armed Services Committee, where he was chairman of
the research and development subcommittee and was regarded
as a thoughtful, middle-of-the-road senator and a swing
vote on crucial issues.
His election to the Senate marked the first time in 30
years that a New Hampshire Democrat had won election to
the upper house. He won election with 54 percent of the
vote in 1966 and 57 percent in 1972. His defeat six years
later by Humphrey, a former commercial airline pilot who
was regarded as a political neophyte and right-wing
activist, was considered a major upset.
The race foreshadowed the upset defeats of incumbent
Senate Democrats two years later and that party's loss of
the Senate. Humphrey raised large sums of money,
campaigned extensively on television and attacked Sen.
McIntyre for his support of treaties transferring control
of the Panama Canal to Panama. Humphrey also attacked
Democrats in general, and `liberals' in particular. This
seemed to hurt Sen. McIntyre despite the fact that he was
regarded by many as one of the more conservative northern
Sen. McIntyre , who had homes in Tequesta, Fla., and his
native Laconia, N.H., was a 1937 graduate of Dartmouth
College and a 1940 graduate of Boston University law
school. He practiced law in Laconia before entering the
Army during World War II.
During the war, he served in Europe in Gen. George S.
Patton's 3rd Army and attained the rank of major. His
decorations included the Combat Infantryman's Badge and
the Bronze Star.
After the war, he returned to Laconia, where he practiced
law and worked in real estate. He was mayor of Laconia
from 1949 to 1951 and city solicitor in 1953. He was an
unsuccessful candidate for the U.S. House of
Representatives in 1954, losing a race with Republican
Chester E. Merrow by less than 400 votes.
Survivors include his wife of 51 years, the former Myrtle
Ann Clement, of Laconia and Tequesta; a daughter, Martha
G. McIntyre of Gilford, N.H.; and a grandson.
Tribute to Tom McIntyre
Congressional Record, October 02, 1992, Page:
Senator Warren Rudman
Mr. RUDMAN. Mr. President, when Senator Tom McIntyre died
in August, I lost a dear friend.
And New Hampshire, the U.S. Senate, and our country lost
a good and faithful public servant.
We in New Hampshire remember Tom McIntyre with respect
and pride--as a native son. Our Government flourishes best
when our officials bring to the people's work a deeply
rooted sense of place. Tom McIntyre, throughout his 16th
years in the Senate, never lost his love for his home
State, its people, its physical beauty, and its
We learned from Tip O'Neill that all politics is local.
Tom McIntyre knew that all policy is local as well,
because its effects are experienced by Americans at home
where they live and work and play. So for Tom McIntyre a
policy proposal's most demanding reality test was how it
would work in practice at home.
Tom McIntyre also never lost touch with the values we
prize in New England. He always saw himself as a moderate
and was proud of it. And indeed, he was one of a
distinguished tradition of moderate Senators of both
parties whom New England proudly sent to Washington. Tom
McIntyre--like George Aiken, Ed Muskie, Charles Tobey,
Ralph Flanders, Margaret Chase Smith, and Ed
Brooke--brought to the Senate a New Englander's hard work,
independence, practicality, common sense, deliberate
judgment, and disdain for pomposity.
And when ideological extremes tore at the heart of our
country in the 1970's, Tom McIntyre, like these other
quiet New Englanders in similar times of stress, defended
the most basic American principles of tolerance, due
process, and the right to be free of fear. In doing so he
helped restore the conscience, civility, and soul of the
New England town meeting to a troubled America when we
needed it most.
We in the Senate also remember Tom McIntyre with respect
and pride--as a self-made legislator.
Tom McIntyre was not a professional politician. He had
had no legislative experience when he was elected to the
Senate in 1962. He was not a policy expert. He had not
been schooled in the policy schools and institutes that
have cropped up in recent decades.
He did bring to his Senate work his firsthand experience.
Before we had a name for environmental policy, he had led
a successful effort to stop the pollution of the beautiful
Lake Winnipesaukee near his hometown of Laconia.
Before we had a name for the communications revolution,
Tom McIntyre and his wife, Myrtle, had pioneered in
bringing cable television to the mountain locked Laconia,
even as television itself was in its infancy.
Before we had a budget crisis, let alone a name for it,
Tom McIntyre balanced budgets as the mayor of Laconia with
classic New England frugality and common sense. One of his
favorite stories was about the time he opposed a request
from the city fire department for a new firetruck with
ladders higher than the highest buildings in
And before we had a name for Soviet studies and arms
control policy, Tom McIntyre had learned from his own
personal experience about dealing with the Soviets. As a
young artillery officer he and his unit had linked up with
Soviet soldiers in Czechoslovakia at the end of the war.
During the impromptu celebration of this historic moment,
Major McIntyre noticed Soviet soldiers were smilingly
about to heist his jeep. When they didn't respond to his
requests to back off, he drew his 45, slammed it on the
fender, and said in a clear loud voice: `Dammit, I said,
`Back Off.' They did, and the celebration of their joint
victory over nazism resumed.
So Tom McIntyre brought to the Senate what he had learned
from these and other direct experiences with real
problems. He also brought to the Senate his own good
judgment, common sense, and nonideological
But he had to learn how to be a legislator. And he had to
learn the old fashioned way--through hard work as a
When he was put on the Senate Banking Committee, he
confessed his anxieties about his lack of training in
economics or finance to Senator Paul Douglas who, of
course, had been a distinguished economist at the
University of Chicago. Douglas reassured him, saying:
`Don't worry about it Tom. You will have the advantage of
not having your mind cluttered up with a lot academic
We in the Senate know how Tom developed into one of the
Senate's most thoughtful and creative legislators in the
field of banking. He chaired the key Subcommittee on
Financial Institutions and helped bring into being
familiar innovations that we now take for granted--NOW
accounts and automatic cash machines.
As he did this work, the McIntyre and his subcommittee
became the target of the powerful and willfully competing
sectors of the banking industry. Each thought it could
dominate and tilt Tom's work to its advantage. But he
resisted them all and stood his ground as the people's own
independent Senator as he did this extraordinarily
His growth as a legislator on the Senate Armed Services
Committee was even more impressive. At first he asked to
serve there primarily to protect the Portsmouth Naval
Shipyard. And he helped preserve that national asset
against the shortsightedness of Robert McNamara and Adm.
Otherwise he had little opportunity to shape policy on
the Armed Services Committee during his first years. The
committee was run firmly from the top of Chairman Richard
Russell and one or two other senior Senators.
Tom later recounted his frustrations. He said that 1 day
when Senator Russell was quietly consulting at the top of
the table with Senator Smith and Senator Stennis on a
matter, Tom raised his hand at the bottom of the committee
table and asked the chairman: `Would you mind speaking a
bit louder please, so Harry Byrd and I could hear what you
are deciding up there.' This passed for audacity from a
junior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee in
But in 1969, Chairman John Stennis asked Tom McIntyre to
undertake what proved to be his most consequential
senatorial work when he asked Tom to chair a new
Subcommittee on Military Research and Development. He
protested that he `didn't have a Ph.D. from MIT,' but he
rolled up his sleeves and set out to learn how to do this
For 10 years Tom McIntyre pioneered congressional
oversight of this most critical work in the Department of
Defense--the seedbed of our military technological
advantage in the crucial stages of the cold war and today.
His judgments could not have been more consequential to
our country's security. Troubled programs like the Patriot
had to be made to work. Revolutionary technologies like
cruise missiles had to be protected against hostile
service interests. And Tom knew that if we invested in the
wrong developments, we could make our country less secure
by underfunding the necessary programs and by fueling the
Tom did this work quietly, usually in executive sessions.
He annually built consensus among his subcommittee
colleagues who rarely agreed on little else--Barry
Goldwater and John Culver, Robert Taft, and Harold Hughes,
for example. Over 10 years his subcommittee reportedly
unanimously 20,000 or so individual recommendations and
divided only on a handful.
And Tom so earned the respect of his colleagues on the
full Armed Services Committee that they endorsed his
recommendations in all but a dozen times or so over a
decade. And during this decade the full Senate accepted
Tom McIntyre's on these thousands of judgments on all but
five or so times. When he left the Senate he was the
Congress' most respected and authoritative member
regarding military technology.
For all these contributions, we in the Senate remember
Tom McIntyre with special respect. We remember he
developed a quiet authority, so that when Tom McIntyre
spoke on the issues for which he was responsible, the
Senate listened and was led.
Our country should also remember Tom McIntyre with
respect and gratitude--as an American whose
straightforward and unassuming service to our Republic
Our Government was designed to be directed by citizens,
not professionals. And Tom McIntyre's work in the Senate
demonstrates yet again that this is both proper and
possible. He served in World War Two as a citizen-soldier.
And he served in the Senate as a citizen-Senator. He did
both jobs with a simple patriotism.
We have won the cold war. The old nuclear danger has
eased. And Tom McIntyre is an unsung hero of both of these
accomplishments which have made Americans safer
Finally, Mr. President, let me say that I personally
remember Tom McIntyre not only with respect, but also with
affection and gratitude--as a friend.
Tom was a role model for many of us in New Hampshire who
entered public life in the 1960's. We did not have to be
of his party or to share his views to learn from and value
his easy good will, his forthrightness, his political
courage, and his integrity.