Esteemed Longtime Baltimore Congressman Elijah Cummings Dies At 68

Chairman Rep. Elijah Cummings(D-MD) arrives before Michael Cohen,US President Donald Trump's former personal attorney,testifies before the House Oversight and Reform Committee in the Rayburn House Office Building on ... Chairman Rep. Elijah Cummings(D-MD) arrives before Michael Cohen,US President Donald Trump's former personal attorney,testifies before the House Oversight and Reform Committee in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on February 27, 2019. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP) (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images) MORE LESS
|
October 17, 2019 6:11 a.m.
JOIN TPM FOR JUST $1

The prominent committee chairman from Baltimore known for his passion for democracy and civil rights Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) died early Thursday morning at the age of 68, his congressional office first announced in a statement.

Cummings passed away at Gilchrist Hospice Care, an affiliate of John Hopkins Hospital at 2:45 a.m. ET due to “complications concerning longstanding health challenges,” his office said in a statement. He did not return to work after undergoing a undisclosed medical procedure, as the Baltimore Sun noted. The Maryland Democratic Party, which his wife Maya Rockeymoore Cummings chairs, confirmed the news in a moving statement on Thursday.

“Congressman Cummings was an honorable man who proudly served his district and the nation with dignity, integrity, compassion and humility,” Rockeymoore Cummings said. “He worked until his last breath because he believed our democracy was the highest and best expression of our collective humanity and that our nation’s diversity was our promise, not our problem. It’s been an honor to walk by his side on this incredible journey. I loved him deeply and will miss him dearly.”

Cummings was the son of a sharecropper and first joined Congress in 1996. At the time of his death he was the chairman of the House Oversight Committee, one of the House committees leading the impeachment inquiry into President Trump. Cummings began his political career in 1982 when he ran for Maryland state delegate and won. He served in the state general assembly for 14 years and was the first black person in state history to be named speaker pro tem.

Known for his impassioned speeches and celebrated record on civil rights, Cummings was beloved by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) ordered the flags at the Capitol to be lowered to half staff in Cummings’ memory on Thursday. When news of his death broke early Thursday, the tributes rolled in across Twitter.

Trump tweeted out his “warmest condolences” on Thursday morning, a noticeable shift in tone from weeks back when Trump created yet another news cycle in which he incessantly attacked lawmakers of color.

Comments
Masthead Masthead
Editor & Publisher:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Senior Editor:
Special Projects Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Reporter:
Senior Newswriters:
Newswriters:
Editor at Large:
General Manager & General Counsel:
Executive Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Publishing Associate:
Front-End Developer:
Senior Designer: