By Erik Wasson
Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) delivered a touching tribute to retiring Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.) at Thursday's Senate Appropriations Committee meeting.
The panel was voting on the 2015 spending bill, authored by Johnson and Kirk, for the embattled Department of Veterans Affairs.
Kirk recalled that after he suffered a stroke, he watched as much video as he could of Johnson, whom he described as his "stroke battle buddy," for inspiration.
"I constantly asked myself, 'are you as good as Sen. Tim Johnson?' " Kirk said. "God, gosh guy — I am going to miss you."