An empty U.S. Capitol after McCain’s death is a sobering reminder that the clock is ticking

The statue of Sen. Barry Goldwater, R-Ariz., in the capital Statuary Hall. Goldwater, Senator JOhn McCain’s Senate predecessor was.

(Chad Pergram/Fox News)

The U.S. Capitol is quietest early on a Sunday morning.

Not A Legislator. No Helpers. No Tourists. No Lobbyists. No Journalists.

Not over night, maintenance crews, and curators, or imprisonment for workers.

Sunday is the only day of the week, when the public Capitol tour. The Senate left town last Thursday and not return until the end of Monday afternoon. The house remains on a five-week break.

The Capitol lives in solitude on Sunday morning. In the convalescence. Breathing. Deprived of the hair-on-fire hustle and bustle dominates the other days.

A deafening silence envelops the vacant Capitol in the early hours of Sunday morning. I was there to report on the Saturday evening of the death of Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. I went a couple of US-Capitol-police officers in the subway Tunnel and on the door. But as far as I could tell, we were the only ones present in the immense expanse of the most famous buildings in the world.

I cut through the middle of the Capitol Rotunda, a cave of emptiness on a Sunday morning. The experience is a stark contrast to the transformation of the rotunda. The nation is their attention to the center of the rotunda on Friday.

This is where the coffin bearing McCain’s remains, the rest is on an old, black, wooden platform. McCain is the 30th person to ever lie “in state” in the Capitol Rotunda. The first of the former speaker of the house of representatives and Kentucky Senator Henry Clay in 1852. The recent sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hi., in December of 2012.

I thought to construct for a moment, the tableau, in my eyes. I culled scenes I was a witness of ceremonies for Inouye, President Reagan and President Ford.

The Coffin. The Guard Of Honour. The Family. To the public.

And I always remember the noise. The muffled shuffling of feet, as the amount of wind turbines around the coffin.

However, on Sunday, my target, the Capitol Rotunda was not. I wanted to snap a picture of the statue of Sen. Barry Goldwater, R-Ariz., in the capital Statuary Hall. Goldwater, McCain’s Senate predecessor was. Only Goldwater and McCain have meant that these, in particular, in the Arizona Senate seat since 3. January, 1953.

McCain came to the Senate in 1987 after two terms in the house. McCain stepped in the shadows of a legend in Goldwater. However, their careers presented symbiotic parallels.

Both earned the Republican nomination for President and lost. The questions were whether or not the two men, the Constitution met the legal qualification for President.

The Constitution, the President “natural born citizens.” Goldwater was born in the “Arizona territory”, before it is admitted into the union in 1912. McCain was born in the United States, Panama canal Zone. Both the chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee.

I arrived at the Goldwater statue, and stared for a moment. And in the Sunday silence of the Statuary Hall, I heard something.

A unique sound echoing from the marble for the Capitol. Not white noise, fill the acoustic void. There was no air conditioning blows. Not A Fan. No distant noise of a vacuum or car horns, voices, or flip around the columns. Only a solitary tick, inaudible during the daily Tumult in the Capitol.

A statue of Clio is highly above a door of Statuary Hall, Speaker’s Office and the rotunda.

Clio is the “muse of history”. Accordingly, it is a winged “car of history.” The face of a clock also serves as one of the wheels of the carriage or the car. Clio is “car” means the continuous passage of time.

A statue of Clio leading from Statuary Hall to the Speaker’s Office and the rotunda.

(Chad Pergram/Fox News)

From your vantage point above the passage, Clio is staring to come to the Congress and go under it. She clasps a book in her left hand, the documenting of events, which you witness in your diary.

The sound I heard, went out from the wheel of the Clio on the story.




Of course. The clock on the wheel of the car, positioned dead center over the door. The daily chaos that consumed steamed, the Capitol is usually ticking. But this was a Sunday morning. Sure. The ticking was muffled. But there it was. A tiny sound. The only audible thing in the depths, empty Capitol.

The silence and desolation of the building seemingly long of milliseconds between each tick, fill in a time gap, the rails for longer than a second. And just when you thought the next tick would not come, because it was.




The ticking reminds me, the longer I stood there, I was losing time. The Capitol was barren, or else frozen in suspended animation. But appearances can be deceiving. Time was not going to stop.

John McCain the time of delivery the night before. His passing – and Clio-ticking clock -took me to a scene I observed on many occasions

I covered McCain for years. I explode with a blue ink pen on his starched, white shirt. I aggressively shouted down by McCain for asking questions. I have baseball and hockey with him in the length. But what I remember most about McCain is that he is always in a hurry.

After votes in the Senate, McCain, the line on the Senate subway would be-station, hectic, a negotiation or an important meeting in the office. If the subway wasn’t there, McCain would beat a little call button in the vicinity to summon the car. You would be ringing, to warn the subway driver that the car was used, at the other end. But more often than not, the subway was not fast enough for McCain. So, he would be impatient, press the button again. And then a third time. Maybe a fourth, practically punching.

Sen. John McCain was known to be always in a hurry, and beat would have to summon a little call button in the vicinity of a car, in the Senate of the U-Bahn station.

(Chad Pergram/Fox News)

Like an Elevator, press the button several times, it is not the arrival of the metro will accelerate. I often wondered if McCain was always in a hurry to make up for his years of captivity in Vietnam.

“John, the entire approach was to life, we want the best of the time we have,” said the former Senate minority whip Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., on Fox. “Certainly he has the best of the time he had here.”

The last time many saw McCain at the height of his powers came in last October, after four U.S. soldiers were killed in an ambush in Niger. And McCain was in a hurry. As Chairman of the Armed Services Committee, McCain frustrated grew, that the Pentagon could not provide answers about what happened.

“I want to speak to the head of Cyber,” seethed McCain, a reference to the U.S. Cyber Command.

Cyber Command could offer, satellites and drones-was pictures on what. But McCain frustrations multiplied, after he got little information. Days spilled out of the calendar. McCain threatened to subpoena the military, if you haste to offer a few explanatory notes to this post. McCain-ultimatum pushed to pay Minister of defence, James Mattis, immediately, a visit to the office of Armed Services Committee Chairman.

McCain had no time to wait. Maybe in more ways than one. He lost a lot of time in Vietnam. To was McCain, every moment is precious. Non-volatile memory. And he didn’t spare a moment.

Back in the Statuary Hall, the clock on the chariot wheel-ticks. The seconds are melting relentlessly in the silence. What Clio scribble in your book?

McCain ‘ s death reminds us that we are all on the clock. He ran out of time.

And we are not.

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