A Monmouth College professor relied pretty heavily on late former President George H. W. Bush.
Ken McMillan teaches Political Economy and Commerce for Monmouth now, but back in the early ’80s, he ran for 17th District Congressman twice, losing both times to late former Congressman Lane Evans. Bush — then Vice-President — campaigned for McMillan in the Quad Cities. And, McMillan tells WGIL, during one of those visits in 1984, he watched Bush prepare for a debate with VP candidate Geraldine Ferraro, by sparring with Illinois Congresswoman Lynn Martin. “…and I remember Mrs. Bush commenting… you know she was really a mean debater when she was trying to hold Vice President Bush’s feet to the fire, answering some questions and so the very relaxed banter between the two of them was very, very interesting.”
McMillan says he had a lot of one-on-one time with Bush during the campaign appearances in the 1980s, and that Bush campaigned in a style that might be different than today. “Vice President Bush was very secure, very relaxed. He came in focused on what my challenge was in the district. He didn’t want to tute is own horn. He wanted to do whatever was possible to ensure that things turned out the way we wanted them to in the election.”
Both times McMillan ran for Congress, he was up against popular 17th District incumbent, the late Lane Evans.
He says that was the authentic George H.W. Bush — same as the rest of the public saw.
McMillan refers to Bush, whose funeral is today, as a “first-class public servant.”