Sunday, 17 February, 2019

John Dingell, Longest-Serving Congressman, Publishes Posthumous Op-ed

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Patty Aguilar | 11 February, 2019, 09:28

As a tribute to his father, who served before him and who introduced the first congressional legislation to establish national health insurance during the New Deal, Dingell introduced his own national health insurance bill at the start of every Congress.

John Dingell was the longest-serving member of Congress in USA history.

However, we would be lying if we didn't at least take a moment to appreciate Dingell's social media prowess and his mastery of the Twitter clapback.

President Donald Trump said Friday on Twitter that John Dingell was "highly respected" and had a "great reputation".

Dingell made no apologies about his party affiliation, tweeting often a year ago in support of Democratic candidates in the midterm elections.

In an acknowledgement of his legacy, President Trump had flags lowered to half-staff.

He and rival Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) jousted for years on the committee over a rewrite of the Clean Air Act, as Dingell sought to cushion Detroit automakers from the aggressive regulation sought by the liberal from smog-plagued Los Angeles. The Democrat was a master of legislative deal-making and a staunch advocate for the US auto industry.

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An advocate of the environment and a proponent of health care, one of his final acts in congress was passing the Affordable Care Act.

His wife Debbie said at the time: 'He's alert and in good spirits, cracking jokes like always'.

In the announcement that Dingell would receive the honor, the White House called him "one of the most influential legislators in history", The Detroit News reported. "Do you think I'm silly enough to let that happen again?" he told the Washington Post in response to the controversial auto industry bailouts following the 2008 financial crisis.

"He was a lion of the United States Congress and a loving son, father, husband, grandfather and friend", her office said in a statement. "Because of him, we've come closer to that vision than ever before", Obama said in a statement Thursday after news broke of Dingell's death at 92.

"He wanted to make sure we all knew we are all part of this great democracy", she wrote on Saturday.

'I want to thank you all for your incredibly kind words and prayers. I was watching C-Span that night in my apartment here in Washington - and saw then-President Lyndon Johnson greet young Congressman John Dingell at the bill-signing.

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