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BOB DOLE: GENESIS OF A CANDIDATE

Droll Dole

Dole: Carved From Kansas Bedrock. Second of two parts.

August 09, 1996

Bob Dole's humor is the stuff of legend inside Washington's Beltway, but he seldom tells jokes or stories. Instead, he responds to events with quips and funny remarks. He is also a man who continually sees and notes in passing the ironic, odd and incongruous aspects of everyday life. Herewith a sampler of Bob Dole humor:

His description of a joint White House appearance by former Presidents Jimmy Carter, Gerald R. Ford and Richard M. Nixon:

--"See no evil, hear no evil and evil."

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His post-election reaction to criticism that as the GOP's 1976 vice presidential candidate, he had ultimately hurt the ticket with his sharp partisan attacks:

--"I was supposed to go for the jugular and I did. My own."

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His reaction to the release of the obscenity-laced Nixon White House tapes:

--"Thank goodness, whenever I was in the Oval Office, I only nodded."

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His comment about whether he had any knowledge of the 1972 Watergate break-in, which occurred while he was Republican national chairman:

--"It was my night off."

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His crack about his fellow Republican senator, the diminutive John Tower of Texas:

--"I got a standing ovation from John Tower, but I couldn't tell the difference."

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His response to a California man who wrote to complain that a 1986 photograph in People magazine of Dole and his wife, Elizabeth, making the bed in their Watergate apartment would encourage other wives to burden their husbands with domestic chores:

--"Buster, you don't know the half of it. The only reason she was helping was because they were taking pictures."

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His description of his reaction to losing the 1988 New Hampshire primary, which derailed his presidential hopes that year:

--"Losing's tough, but you get over it. . . . The night after New Hampshire, I went home and slept like a baby. Every two hours I woke up and cried."

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