Veteran Democratic Leader Elijah Cummings Has Died

by Taylor Handberry Staggers

October 17, 2019

Photo by Salwan Georges/ AP Images

Rep. Elijah Cummings has died at the age of 68. A press release sent by his office states the Democratic congressman passed away early Thursday morning “due to complications concerning longstanding health challenges.”

The statement says that Cummings was at Johns Hopkins Hospital at the time of his passing.

His wife, Maryland’s Democratic Party Chair Dr. Maya Rockeymoore Cummings also released a statement honoring her husband.

“Congressman Cummings was an honorable man who proudly served his district and the nation with dignity, integrity, compassion, and humility. 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. Its been an honor to walk by his side on this incredible journey. I loved him deeply and will miss him dearly.”

The couple married in 2008 and share four children.

Photo by Andrew Harrer-Pool/Getty Images

As Chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee responsible for investigations involving the current presidential administration the beloved congressman found himself going head to head with President Trump who referred to Baltimore as a “rodent-infested mess” where “no human being would want to live.” Cummings responded by giving a speech where he said, “Those in the highest levels of the government must stop invoking fear, using racist language and encouraging reprehensible behavior.” This political feud sparked the #WeAreBaltimore movement. DL Hughley also weighed in on the conversation.

Born January 18, 1951, to sharecroppers and growing up in the racially divided Baltimore of the 1950s and ’60s, the Maryland native grew to become a leading figure in the black community. He spent his entire life and career fighting for the rights and advancement of our people. He served in congress, representing Maryland’s Seventh District which includes West Baltimore and it’s surrounding cities, since being elected 1996.

Known for his fiery voice, the Howard Alumnus was never afraid to speak up or challenge any opposition when it came to critical issues surrounding inner-city residents and people of color. His rise in congress is a true testament to the hard work and devotion he had to his community and constituents.

Join us as we remember and honor the life of Rep. Elijah Cummings

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