The powerful voice of reason that was Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-MD) has been silenced today (October 17), at age 68, due to “complications concerning longstanding health challenges,” spokeswoman Trudy Perkins confirmed in a statement, according to The New York Times. Cummings, the son of sharecroppers and a passionate advocate of Baltimore, died at a hospice facility connected to Johns Hopkins Hospital between 2:30 and 2:45 this morning.
As chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, Cummings spearheaded the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump. “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,” his wife, Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, who chairs the Maryland Democratic Party, told The Times.
And Americans are feeling the loss. Many took to Twitter to express their grief over the loss of Cummings, who began representing Maryland’s 7th Congressional District in 1996.
We lost a giant today. Congressman Elijah Cummings was a fearless leader, a protector of democracy, and a fighter for the people of Maryland. Our world is dimmer without him in it.
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) October 17, 2019
The entire @NAACP family is devastated by loss of #ElijahCummings. A fearless champion of justice who fought tirelessly for civil rights & equality for everyone, including his beloved Baltimore. Our democracy is stronger because of him. #RestInPower pic.twitter.com/GLyd2aNKd9
— NAACP (@NAACP) October 17, 2019
Thank you, @RepCummings.
What a life of passionate service and courage.
My heartfelt condolences to your wife, your family, the City of Baltimore, the United States and the world.
— Be A King (@BerniceKing) October 17, 2019
A great man has left us. @RepCummings was an extraordinary human being & leader. There are no words to describe what a blow this is for #Baltimore & for our country. #ElijahCummings led with humanity, humility & a fierce dedication to justice. He was so special and unique.
— Sherrilyn Ifill (@Sifill_LDF) October 17, 2019
This one has broken me.
I am broken. @RepCummings was a lion. A fierce warrior for justice. He was principled and kind. His spirit was pure & his moral compass was true. He will be GREATLY missed.
— yvette nicole brown (@YNB) October 17, 2019
Rest In Peace, Elijah Cummings. His passing would be a huge loss to his family, his district and his country under any circumstances. But this particular moment puts his absence into even sharper relief.
— jelani cobb (@jelani9) October 17, 2019