The Quayle-ism Hall of Fame

It isn't pollution that's harming the environment. It's the impurities in our air and water that are doing it.
-- Vice President Dan Quayle

I believe we are on an irreversible trend toward more freedom and democracy - but that could change.
-- Vice President Dan Quayle, 5/22/89 (reported in Esquire, 8/92)

The Holocaust was an obscene period in our nation's history. I mean in this century's history. But we all lived in this century. I didn't live in this century.
-- Senator Dan Quayle, 9/15/88 (reported in Esquire, 8/92, The New Yorker, 10/10/88, p.102)

This election is about who's going to be the next President of the United States!
-- Senator Dan Quayle, 9/2/88 (reported in Esquire, 8/92)

One word sums up probably the responsibility of any vice president, and that one word is 'to be prepared'.
-- Vice President Dan Quayle, 12/6/89 (reported in Esquire, 8/92)

If we do not succeed, then we run the risk of failure.
-- Vice President Dan Quayle, to the Phoenix Republican Forum, 3/23/90 (reported in Esquire, 8/92) Also reported by Reuters, 5/2/90

Let me just tell you how thrilling it really is, and how, what a challenge it is, because in 1988 the question is whether we're going forward to tomorrow or whether we're going to go past to the -- to the back!
-- Senator Dan Quayle, 8/17/88 (reported in Esquire, 8/92)

What a waste it is to lose one's mind. Or not to have a mind is being very wasteful. How true that is.
-- Vice President Dan Quayle winning friends while speaking to the United Negro College Fund, 5/9/89 This gem has been added to Bartlett's 'Familiar Quotations'. (reported in Esquire, 8/92) (reported in the NY Times, 12/9/92)

Take a breath, Al... Inhale.
-- Vice President Dan Quayle politely cutting off Senator Al Gore during the VP Debate in Atlanta, 10/13/92. Gov. Zell Miller of Georgia said that Dan Quayle reminded him of one of his grandkids when they've had too much sugar.

Republicans understand the importance of bondage between a mother and child.
-- Senator Dan Quayle, US News and World Report (10/10/88)

Hawaii has always been a very pivotal role in the Pacific. It is in the Pacific. It is a part of the United States that is an island that is right here.
-- Vice President Dan Quayle, Hawaii, 4/25/89 (reported in Esquire, 8/92)

Welcome to President Bush, Mrs. Bush, and my fellow astronauts.
-- Vice President Dan Quayle addressing the 20th anniversary celebration of the moon landing, 7/20/89 (reported in Esquire, 8/92)

Mars is essentially in the same orbit... Mars is somewhat the same distance from the Sun, which is very important. We have seen pictures where there are canals, we believe, and water. If there is water, that means there is oxygen. If oxygen, that means we can breathe.
-- Vice President Dan Quayle, 8/11/89 (reported in Esquire, 8/92)

The loss of life will be irreplaceable.
-- Vice President Dan Quayle after the San Francisco earthquake, 10/19/89 (reported in Esquire, 8/92)

Bobby Knight told me this: "There is nothing that a good defense cannot beat a better offense." In other words a good offense wins.
-- Senator Dan Quayle, in a speech to the City Club of Chicago, comparing the offensive capabilities of the Warsaw Pact with the defensive system of NATO, 9/8/88 (reported in Esquire, 8/92)