U.S. Rep. Austin Scott, who organized Tuesday’s tribute, appeared to hold back tears when he retired to the rostrum.
U.S. Rep. John Lewis and U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson embrace on the House floor during a tribute to the retiring senator on Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2019. Image is ascreen grab from the House livestream.
“I wish all of America could be here to see that: Two icons from Georgia embracing,” said Scott, a Republican from Tifton. “What a wonderful sight that I think is representative of days of past and the days to come and how we should work together. Thank you both so much.”
Isakson is retiring from Congress at the end of this year. He said in August that he made the difficult decision after a series of health setbacks, including a fall in July that resulted in four broken ribs.
He also had surgery to remove a malignant growth on his kidney and has been public about his bout with Parkinson’s disease.
Almost all of Georgia’s House members paid tribute to Isakson on Tuesday. Members of the U.S. Senate will do the same in December, when Isakson will also give his farewell speech.