Nancy Pelosi praised Elijah Cummings on Thursday after the Chair of the Committee on Oversight and Reform died at the age of 68. The House Speaker said that she was “personally devastated” by Cummings’ passing and called him the “North Star” of the House.
According to The Hill, Pelosi issued a statement Thursday morning after hearing that the Maryland Democrat had died due to long-standing health complications. She praised the politician for his work in Congress and his ability to push others to a higher standard.
“In the House, Elijah was our North Star. He was a leader of towering character and integrity, whose stirring voice and steadfast values pushed the Congress and country to rise always to a higher purpose,” she said.
She also commended his work as the head of the Committee on Oversight and Reform.
“His principled leadership as Chair of the Committee on Oversight and Reform was the perfect testament to his commitment to restoring honesty and honor to government, and leaves a powerful legacy for years to come.”
Pelosi continued her praise, pointing out Cumming’s story of working to rise from his humble beginnings to become one of the most powerful leaders in the House, known for his tireless championing of civil and human rights.
“Chairman Cummings’ story was the story of America: a sharecroppers’ son who dedicated his life to advancing justice, respecting human dignity and ending discrimination. He believed in the promise of America because he had lived it, and he dedicated his life to advancing the values that safeguard our republic: justice, equality, liberty, fairness,” Pelosi said.
Pelosi wasn’t the only Democrat to express admiration for Cummings. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer called him a “dear friend” who was dedicated to serving his country. House Majority Whip James Clyburn called Cummings “a giant” and praised Cummings’ ability to serve his constituents and defend democracy.
Politicians on both sides of the aisle shared their respect for the late Representative, including the president. As The Inquisitr previously reported, though the two had clashed all summer long, Donald Trump issued a tweet praising Cummings and offering condolences for his family.
Cummings died early Thursday morning at the age of 68 after serving in the House for 23 years. He had been struggling with health issues related to his heart for several years, though a cause of death was not released by the family. Pelosi ordered flags to be flown at half-mast throughout the capitol after Cummings’ passing.