My friends, I want to Say a few words about my friend of many years, Bob Dole. I consider it a great blessing to have for my leader in the Senate an authentic American hero. Bob Dole is a man for whom the adjectives dignified, honorable and courageous seem understated. It will be a great privilege and the country's great fortune to salute Bob Dole as Commander-in-Chief.
Though they are my friends and I consider them good men, Bob's opponents in this race cannot match the quality of his character or his users record of conservative accomplishments. They have not the stature nor the ability that Bob Dole will bring to the Oval Office. That's why I am proud to support him, and why I feel so strongly that Bob is the only one who can unite our party and beat Bill Clinton.
Others offer you sound bites and gimmicks. Bob Dole offers you leadership...leadership rooted in the character of a man who risked his life for love of country, and considers service to America his honor.
Vision and ideas are more than soundbites and gimmicks. Don't let a candidate promise you new ideas and give you mud boots and a work shirt instead. Bob thinks more of you than that. He can tell you where he wants to lead America without dressing down for the occasion. His Dad wore his overalls to work every day of Its life. And Bob doesn't have to wear a plaid shirt to remember he's his son.
You know Bob's vision for America, you recognize it because its your vision too, All I want you to believe about Bob Dole as a candidate for President is this: he gets his vision from you. Your hopes are his mission. Your cares are his cause.
What Bob tells you as a candidate, he will do as president. His opponents may attack his style, but there's not a man or woman in America who will deny his integrity. He's a man of his word.
When Bob tells us he'll balance the budget, he will balance the budget.
When he promises to cut our taxes, he'll cut our taxes.
When he promises to get interests rates down, they'll come down. You can depend on it. Bob Dole has always, always delivered on his word.
Bob Dole will fire up the engine of this economy and restore the great promise of America to all those who have the will to work and prosper, but who have been left behind in recent years by a government that doesn't seem to care.
He won't balance the budget, cut our taxes and lower interest rates simply because lie's good with figures. He'll balance the federal budget so that you will have an easier time balancing your family budget. He'll do it so that you won't have to go broke to help your kids Set started in life.
Your job will be to raise your kids right, to raise them to be responsible citizens, to work hard, dream large, keep their promises and honor their debts. You don't expect Government to raise your kids for you, but you do expect it to keep this country the kind of place where good kids can get ahead And that's why Bob Dole will be President.
That's what a balanced budget means. It isn't just an abstract notion, it has a human face. It's the face of our children and grandchildren. Bob Dole is the only candidate who I guarantee you will balance the budget and cut our taxes. He'll do it for the sake of the dreams we dream for our children and the dreams they will dye= for theirs.
Let me talk a little bit about the other half of a President's job - his role as Commander-in-Chief. Bob Dole will restore purpose and principle to our foreign policy. Under his leadership, we will defend our interests again. Vacillation and doubt will no longer define our statecraft. Diplomacy will no longer take on the character of social work. And this complex and dangerous world will again know the strength and courage of American leadership. We will again make our way in this world, sure of ourselves, firm in our purpose and proud of our heritage.
We will not risk lives and fortune needlessly, lurching from crisis to crisis. But neither will we hide from the world. My friend, Pat Buchanan wants to build a wall around us, to keep the world and its troubles away. But the more we ignore them the larger those troubles will get and the sooner they will find us.
Pat wants to keep imports out, but he will end up keeping our exports here. Then Pat won't worry about losing jobs to other countries. We won't have any jobs left to lose.
But beyond the danger and economic disaster that Pat's isolationism promises, what does it say about character of this country? We are Americans. We don't hide from other countries. We don't run from competition. We compete, we fight and we win. We lead the world. We always have and always will.
I would not want to live in an America that cowers behind some wall, trembling in fear of Mexico and Canada. That's not an America first. That's in America afraid, That's not the future Bob Dole wants for this country!
Pat Buchanan says he wants to lead a new conservatism, a "conservatism of the heart," he calls it.
But, for all Pat's eloquence, when you listen closely to him you know that his is a conservatism with a small heart. It holds a narrow vision for America, based on fear, nurturing our resentments and abandoning our hopes. We dare not take it for our own.
Pat's is a vision of an America in decline, a lost America, an America that searches not for solutions, but for someone to blame, an America where dreams are for fools, and hope is a vice, an America that is smaller than a child's dreams.
Bob Dole wants us to five in a bigger place. He wants us to live in the country we once called the land of unlimited opportunity. He wants to lead an America where every parent's child can do as well as his parents' child has done.
The generation of Americans who fought in the Second World War came home to the bill and a booming economy. They immediately began building prosperous for other Americas. And they gave a name to this century. They call it the American century. We may not be able to replicate the very same America today, but Bob Dole knows how we can build an even better one for tomorrow.
Like a lot of guys, Bob Dole came home from war a little broken by the experience. And he had to rebuild himself before he could build a career. He didn't do it alone. He had a lot of help. He had a family that never let him down. He had a lot of neighbors and friends in Russell, Kansas who gave what little money they had to help pay for his recovery. They were good people... the very best. Although many of them are gone now, I know that Bob sees their faces every day. Every day. And he knows what he owes them.
They gave Bob hope. And they expected him to serve the hopes of others. To serve our hopes. That's what Bob has done so well for a while now. That's what he will keep doing as President. But he needs your help. He needs you to help him lead this great country to an even better future. To the next American century.
So when the pundits tell you that Bob Dole has no vision, set them straight. Tell them you know what vision is. Tell them its your vision. Tell them he holds our beat hopes. Tell them he carries our deepest cares, and the he will never let us down.
My friends, please welcome the next President of the United States, Senator Bob Dole.