Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL) released the following statement on the passing of former House Energy and Commerce Chairman John Dingell, Jr. of Michigan, who was the longest serving Member of Congress in history:
“When I first came to Congress in 1993, Congressman John Dingell had already been serving the people of Michigan for 38 years. His illustrious career in Congress spanned 59 years, from the Eisenhower Administration to the Obama Administration, as the longest serving Member of Congress in American history.
“During the era of the New Deal, John helped usher in a new era of American prosperity, securing landmark victories promoting clean air and water, civil rights, safer food, protections for endangered species and the American automobile industry, and, perhaps dearest to his heart, healthcare reform. Chairman Dingell spent his entire career in pursuit of a more equitable, affordable, and comprehensive healthcare system, and it was his visionary leadership that helped to make this dream a reality for so many. He was one of the best legislators I ever had the privilege to serve with, and I was lucky to have benefited from his friendship for so many years.
“The world and our country have lost a dear friend to so many. When legends pass, their great deeds live on. John Dingell is dead, long live John Dingell.
“I offer my deepest condolences to John’s beloved wife, Congresswoman Debbie Dingell, and the entire Dingell family. Chairman Dingell was a remarkable man, and his legacy will no doubt live on for generations to come.”
Congressman Alcee L. Hastings serves as Vice-Chairman of the House Rules Committee, Chairman of the U.S. Helsinki Commission, and Co-Chairman of the Florida Delegation.