'MR SPKR': John Boehner Gets a Parting Gift as He Bids Farewell

by Alex Moe /  / Updated 

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An emotional John Boehner held his farewell press conference Tuesday as he prepares to step down as Speaker of the House at the end of the week.

“I feel pretty good about where I am,” Boehner told reporters. “I like the fact that I see light at end of the tunnel.”

The Ohio Republican, who is currently serving in his fifth year as Speaker, admitted some days are better than others.

“When you sign up for the job you have to take everything that comes at you,” Boehner, who has been serving in Congress since 1991, said about leading the 435-member body.

His Republican colleagues honored him with a four-minute tribute video during a closed door meeting Tuesday.

Boehner will even be sporting a new ride after he departs Capitol Hill -- the House Republican conference presented him with a new golf cart, personalized MR SPKR license plate and all, as a parting gift. The Ohio delegation also gave him a new golf bag and a new set of clubs.

Credit: House Republican Conference

The avid golfer told reporters “obviously” his favorite game will be part of his retirement plans.

Asked what his “best day” in the job has been over these last five years, the former Education Committee chairman beamed.

“Probably last Wednesday when we reauthorize the Opportunity Scholarships for the kids here in DC,” Boehner recalled holding back tears. “And it also happened to be, that evening, the annual Boehner Feinstein Williams Dinner raising money for another group of kids and a scholarship program.”

Boehner is also exiting Congress on a high note after striking a bipartisan deal with the White House addressing both the nation’s budget and extending the debt limit.

He said people who doubted he could muster this agreement had “ye of little faith” and is leaving this deal as a gift of sorts to his likely successor, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI).

“I didn't want him to walk into a dirty barn full of you know what. So I have done my best to try and clean it up,” Boehner said.

Boehner will give a farewell address to Congress Oct. 29 just before a new speaker is officially elected.

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