Floor and Committee Statements

   Mr. ISAKSON. Mr. President, it is said that the quickest route to a man’s heart is through his stomach. I tried to prove that today at lunch when I supplied barbecue for all the members of the Senate, Republican and Democratic.

   For the 11th year in a row, I have done that, and I have done it for a very specific reason. Tonight, when you listen to the news on ABC or NBC or you read the newspaper, they will talk about a do-nothing Congress, and they will talk about how we never do anything and we don’t get along and how we don’t work, when, in fact, I know, because I have been here a long time, we work pretty hard. Now, we have a difficult time getting results sometimes, but that is because the issues are tough.

   When you feed a man barbecue, and you have a tough issue to handle, you have a chance of getting it done, and tonight we did that.

   All but three members of the Senate were there, stayed the whole time, and the barbecue was outstanding. I want to pay tribute to the people from Marietta, Ga., my hometown, who drove here for two nights and then cooked all night last night so the barbecue was absolutely fresh today when the Senate had it.

   Dale Thornton is here, and Dale and his wife Tracey have a catering business called the South 40 Smokehouse in Marietta, Ga. If you have ever eaten good barbecue that has the best rub, the best smoke, best tenderness, best temperature, South 40 has it. They are fantastic.

   Dale has been a good friend of mine for a time and was here last year, here this year, and has been here many years before, and all I have had all day long is people coming by and saying: “Is there anything I can do for you?” So I want my constituents to know I wasn’t wasting my time eating barbecue. I was gaining good points from my members, so if I need a vote I can get it. That is not any way of using influence, but it is a way of using barbecue.

   I want to thank Dale and his group, and I want to recognize all of them by name because I think they are listening at this time: Dale Thornton, who is the chief pitmaster; Tracey Thornton, who is his chief, I might add, but she is the chief and brains of the organization; Charles Wells, retired Fulton County Fire Department; Chief Todd Houghton, pitmaster and Air Force flight mechanic; Margaret Houghton; Brian Rule, pitmaster; Jay Tinney, pressmaster; Chuck Taylor, a 35-year chef; Jeff Carson, 20-year veteran chef; Kell Phelps, pitmaster; Janet Phelps; and Raylyn Phelps, the daughter.

   They drove up here from Marietta, Ga., about 700 miles away, to prepare the best food you ever had to eat. Republicans and Democrats shared eating it all. We didn’t have to do the dishes. So we ate all the food. We did it so we can take the last half of this year and work hard for the American people, and I hope a byproduct is our working together to find solutions for the American people’s problems. After all, our job is not about who has the best food but who has the best ideas and what is right for the American people, and you can always find that when you are working together.

   I appreciate the time to recognize everybody from South 40. I thank South 40 for what they did. I thank you all for the barbecue. God bless all of you, and God bless the United States of America.

###