John Dingell, longest-serving Congress member ever, dead at 92

09 February, 2019, 16:23 | Author: Lillian Steele
  • Rep. John Dingell attends a news conference in March 2013 in Washington D.C. File

He held office for 59 years. Debbie Dingell posted a message after her husband, John Dingell, died Thursday night at the age of 92.

The Dearborn Democrat had been battling prostate cancer that metastasized. "He will be remembered for his decades of public service to the people of Southeast Michigan, his razor sharp wit, and a lifetime of dedication to improving the lives of all who walk this Earth". "My deepest sympathies go out to Congresswoman Dingell and the entire Dingell family".

In September, John suffered a heart attack but was in good spirits and treated at Henry Ford Hospital. He was hospitalized, but was soon "cracking jokes as usual", his wife said at the time.

He was first elected in 1955 and announced in 2014 that he would not be seeking a 30th term in the House. He helped write most of America's major environmental and energy law. He began his career during former President Dwight D. Eisenhower's administration and retired in 2014 during former President Barack Obama's administration.

Dingell was a champion of the auto industry and was credited with increasing access to health care, among other accomplishments. He became the longest-serving member of Congress on June 7, 2013, when he surpassed the former record holder, the late West Virginia Sen.

Obama awarded Dingell the Presidential Medal of Freedom later that year.

John Dingell, the longest serving congressman in USA history, has died aged 92.

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Dingell also discussed his personal views of power, palpably showing his reverence for the position of public trust the voters had given him, and the responsibilities it came with.

During his almost five decades in Congress, Dingell was a staunch supporter of the auto industry. Their deal led to the signing of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990.

In 2007, Dingell proposed a carbon tax that would have hiked the price of gasoline by 63 cents a gallon.

"I've gotten more death threats around here than I can remember", Dingell told The Associated Press in a 1995 interview. "I don't want to be going out feet-first, and I don't want to do less than an adequate job", said Dingell, who by that time was using a cane or motorized cart to get around the Capitol. "I will get you a bill that you will hate, but it will be a bill that you can live with'". "In 2010, it was my privilege to hold that same gavel as we passed the Affordable Care Act".

And it is a source of great satisfaction to know that she is among the largest group of women to have ever served in the Congress (as she busily recruits more).

"He was a passionate advocate for health care for all and was instrumental in creating Medicare and passing the Afforable Care Act; a defender of the environment who helped pass the Clean Water Act and Endangered Species Act; and tireless champion of civil rights who would often cite his vote for the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as the proudest and most important of his career", the Clintons said in their statement.

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