Thingish Things

Bob Turner for U.S. Senate

Written By: William F. B. O'Reilly - Jun• 25•12


There are a handful of people I’ve met in life who I wish I was more like. Bob Turner is one of them. The television-executive-turned-congressman is one of those rare souls who truly knows who is he is.

Anyone meeting Bob Turner for the first time quickly learns that, not through his words — Bob is a listener not a talker — but through his demeanor and judgment. He is that sage man at the end of the table who people, one-by-one, invariably seek out for counsel (after listening to the mindless chatter of the showboaters).

I have spoken at least 1,000 words to Bob for every one that has been returned. But the weight of his words has far exceeded that of mine.  Most of us speak to fill voids; Bob Turner speaks when he has something to say. What a rarity. He usually manages to mix his points with a dose of humor, which makes them all the more agreeable.

I never thought Bob would make it in politics when I met him a year ago.  Turns out I didn’t know voters as well as I thought I did.  Here is a man who gives one word answers to debate questions, often replying “yes” or “no”  following lengthy soliloquies from political rivals; a man who actually says what he thinks, politely refusing to repeat his teams’ artfully crafted talking points. That is exactly what voters were looking for apparently. They thirsted for authenticity.  In a world full of blowhards, here was the genuine article.

Two years ago, Bob Turner was a semi-retired businessman alarmed at the direction in which his country was headed. Today he is a sitting conservative congressman in a district that had not elected a Republican since 1922 — the year “Silent Cal” Coolidge was elected President.  

Congressman Turner is in a Republican U.S. Senate primary tomorrow (Tuesday, June 26) against two other Republican candidates, one of which I would likely support in any other election; the other of which is unequipped for high office (in my personal opinion).

But there is only one Bob Turner on the ballot tomorrow, and I will vote for him with 100% certainty that he is the right choice for our times.  I ask those of you who find yourselves New Yorkers and Republicans to do the same tomorrow. The country needs people like Bob Turner right now — unshakable leaders who can guide us to higher ground.


P.S. Not to be too corny, but the Rudyard Kipling poem “If” has repeatedly come to mind when around Congressman Turner.  Here it is as a refresher. Thanks for indulging me a moment longer. Kipling can capture what I cannot. 


By Rudyard Kipling

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build’em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you will be a Man, my son!

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