John Dingell: 'The work is certainly not finished. But we've made progress'


Dingell Jr. died at the age 92.

Dingell announced in 2014 he would retire from the House after representing Michigan's 12th District for almost 60 years, surpassing Sen.

He presided over the House when it passed Medicare, and he loaned the gavel he used that day in 1965 to Speaker Nancy Pelosi for the chamber's approval of former President Barack Obama's federal health care overhaul in 2010.

Tributes poured in following Dingell's death, including from former US presidents, colleagues and some of his more than 250,000 Twitter followers. He described Dingell as a "tireless advocate" who fought for clean air, clean water, consumer protections and financial regulations throughout his almost six decades in Congress.

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

Dingell never held his fire or ire for Trump on Twitter, referring to him last month as "idiot president" and "crook" in tweets about the partial government shutdown.

His critics called him overpowering and intimidating, and his Washington office was decorated with big game trophies.

'I want to thank you all for your incredibly kind words and prayers.

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Clinton said Dingell's "respect for his constituents, his colleagues of both parties, and the institutions of Congress are a valuable reminder today of what a noble calling public service can be".

On Wednesday, Dingell's wife, Debbie Dingell, who was elected to succeed him, said on Twitter that she skipped the State of the Union address in Washington to be with him after his health declined.

JOHN DINGELL: Wife is working late tonight, might eat ice cream for dinner - YOLO.

Dingell considered President George H.W. Bush a "dear friend", but also an "honest" one who would "often remark that I could be a "giant pain in the ass" at times".

KELLY: As news of his death became known, Twitter expressed its collective dismay, re-shared favorite posts from John Dingell and said goodbye.

Former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in a joint statement that Dingell "represented the people of MI with honor, integrity, great good humor, and an unequaled ability to get good legislation passed".

Dingell replaced his father, who passed away in 1955, as a representative of MI and won his first congressional election in 1959.

"Deepest sympathies to Congresswoman Debbie Dingell and the entire family of John Dingell", Trump tweeted Friday.