Former congressman and professional football quarterback Jack Kemp, who died earlier this month, understood throughout his political life that his positions on various issues were consistent.
Some of Kemp's many admirers still do not seem to recognize that.
After a sterling career with the Buffalo Bills professional football team, Kemp capitalized on his prominence by running for and winning a seat in Congress from western New York. His constituents realized quickly that they had elected a winner.
In all, he won nine terms in the House of Representatives.
Later, he ran unsuccessfully for president and vice president.
Kemp, a Republican, was praised this week by leaders of both his and the Democratic Party. Some pointed to what, in the words of one, was his prominence "in later years" of championing programs to help the poor, inner city residents and immigrants.
While Kemp may have supported specific programs in those regards, his policies always were in tune with the needs of all Americans. He was an early champion of former President Ronald Reagan's "supply side economics."
He supported Reagan's important tax cuts because, as Kemp so ably explained, tax reform results in growth in the economy.
Lower taxes mean more jobs simply because more money flowing in the private sector - not going to Washington - inevitably spurs growth.
Growth in the economy brings opportunities for all Americans - rich, poor and middle class - Kemp understood.
Too many liberals, then and now, have not grasped that truism.
Kemp also understood that popularity should not be the goal of politicians - that they are elected to provide leadership.
"Pro football gave me a good perspective," he once explained.
"When I entered the political arena, I had already been booed, cheered, cut, sold, traded and hung in effigy."
Kemp should be mourned by realists of both political parties because he provided a strong voice for rationality in tax policy.