Bob Dole fended off criticism Friday about not attending funeral services for Commerce Secretary Ron Brown with a simple retort: “You can’t do everything.”
Dole, the Senate majority leader, House Speaker Newt Gingrich and other top Republicans in Congress were invited to the funeral but did not attend.
Jesse Jackson called their absence “a hurtful act of partisan indecency.”
Dole said he had expressed his condolences to the family and called for a moment of silence during a campaign stop.
“I’ve tried to be very respectful,” he said.
“I mean, had I gone, Jesse Jackson would have been saying, ‘Bob Dole is playing politics.’ I can’t cope with Jesse Jackson.”