The Byrd Center joins with the nation and the world as we reflect on the life and legacy of President George Herbert Walker Bush. Before his term as the forty-first President of the United States, George H.W. Bush served in the United States House of Representatives from the ninth district of Texas, played a significant diplomatic role in the opening of relations between the United States and the Peoples Republic of China, headed the Central Intelligence Agency, and served two terms as Vice President during the Ronald Reagan Administration. His lengthy career in public service coincided largely with that of Senator Byrd, and the two served in leadership in the Senate together during the 100th Congress (1987-1988) during Byrd's last term as Majority Leader.
In his capacity as Chief of the U.S. Liaison Office to the People’s Republic of China in 1975, Bush traveled with Senator Byrd and West Virginia Congressman John Slack on a delegation to China as America worked to open diplomatic relations with the nation. As Vice President on January 6, 1989, Bush administered the oath of office to Senator Byrd as he assumed the role of President Pro Tempore of the U.S. Senate. During his term in office, President Bush and Senator Byrd worked together to reauthorize the Appalachian Regional Development Act, providing funding for critical infrastructure, education, and healthcare projects in the state.
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