For all the bitter partisan battles, the US Senate is a very exclusive club.
Another reminder came from former Vice President Dan Quayle, who shared his recollections of Senator Edward M. Kennedy this afternoon on MSNBC.
Quayle -- who was mocked by many Democrats as President George H.W. Bush's No. 2, plucked as a rather obscure senator from Indiana -- said while Kennedy assertively pushed his liberal Democratic agenda and criticized Bush administration policies, he always treated him with respect.
Quayle recalled a kind note he received during an election campaign in which Kennedy offered to speak ill or speak well of him -- "whichever will help you most."
"I still have that note," Quayle told NBC's Andrea Mitchell.
The former vice president also fondly remembered the advice that Kennedy gave him when he entered the Senate in 1981 -- to make sure to take care of his three young children.
Kennedy knew their names -- and not many other colleagues did, Quayle said.
While Kennedy went "110 percent...full throttle" about all the issues he cared about, he also worked with Republicans.
"He kept his word," Quayle said. "We need more of that today."
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.