Me and Jeff Sessions

Of the appointments President-Elect Trump is likely to make, Jeff Sessions will likely be the only one I know personally.  This being so, I am minded to scribble a few words concerning what I know of him.

In 1995, in the Alabama Republican Primary, Jeff and I were both on the ballot, he for the Senate and I for Congress.  I lost, but Jeff won against six credible candidates, and he went on to win in the general election against three not so credible Democrats.  (Two years previously, I had lost in the primary by 23 votes out of 50,000 cast.)  Since we were both on the ticket, naturally, Jeff's and my paths crossed on occasions.  In fact, after my loss, what had been my campaign headquarters in Huntsville was bequeathed to the Sessions campaign.  It was used, among many other things, for a rendezvous with John McCain when his bus came rolling in.

Through that time, and since then, I have gotten to know this man well.  His humility is becoming.  When friends in his hometown of Mobile were trying to get him to run for the Senate, they had to use force.  At the beginning, he was in the office of a supporter, drawn there to make money-raising calls.  Jeff made one call and hem-hawed around, and then he hung up the phone; said, "I can't do this"; and headed for the door.  His host caught him by the sleeve, led him back to the phone, and sat menacingly by his side as he made his first few calls.  The idea of going down a list of unknown names, calling them, and asking them for money seemed unnatural and egotistical to this young man, who was used to the modest and genteel ways in which he was reared. 

Jeff spent his youth in Minden, Alabama.  It's somewhere down there below Montgomery.  Let me know if your map is detailed enough to show it.  In high school, he worked as a clerk in a hardware store, where he sold, among other things, horse collars.  Yes, horse collars.  I have referred to that happenstance frequently, as I am now, as evidence of a youth being groomed to become a man of earthy earnestness and honesty with a practical understanding of life. 

My friendship with Jeff Sessions has been constant through the years.  Only once did one of our conversations occur with the raised voices of a disagreement.  And that was like a mark in the snow that evaporated at sunrise.  Shortly afterward, we greeted each other with chuckles, not words, acknowledging the triviality of the incident. 

Jeff Sessions is all that the outlaws now about to be trundled out of town on the tumbrel are not.  Above all, he is honest.  He is patriotic, hardworking for the good, and of good instincts.  If the rest of Mr. Trump's appointees merely approach the goodness of Jeff Sessions, we will have the good and great government that I, together with those reading these words, have hoped for so long. 

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