Michigan Democrat John D. Dingell passed away yesterday from cancer at age 92 and was the longest serving Congress person in U.S. history, after serving in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1955 to 2015. Dingell was diagnosed with prostate cancer last year and chose to forgo treatment. He entered hospice care early this year and passed yesterday in comfort at his home, in Dearborn, Michigan.
Dingell decided to write an opinion piece before passing and used it to reflect on Congress’ progressive accomplishments, but also to denounce the behavior of Donald Trump. “In our modern political age, the presidential bully pulpit seems dedicated to sowing division and denigrating, often in the most irrelevant and infantile personal terms, the political opposition.”
Trump responded to Dingell’s passing and it seems that he quite possibly did not remember who Dingel was, because in a Friday night social media post, he called Dingell “very smart” and praised him. It’s possible Trump was trying to be sarcastic, but we cannot read his mind. Trump’s post on its face, heaps praise on someone who constantly bashed him and used their dying words against him.
“Deepest sympathies to Congresswoman Debbie Dingell and the entire family of John Dingell. Longest serving Congressman in Country’s history which, if people understand politics, means he was very smart. A great reputation and highly respected man,” Trump said.
Deepest sympathies to Congresswoman Debbie Dingell and the entire family of John Dingell. Longest serving Congressman in Country’s history which, if people understand politics, means he was very smart. A great reputation and highly respected man.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 8, 2019
Dingell viciously opposed Trump whenever he could, including with posts on social media, like the ones below, in which he said, “Trump’s entire criminal operation is on the brink of collapsing and honestly there is not enough popcorn in the world,” and “Trump caved and called it a deal.” He clearly used his last days alive to call out Trump.
TRUMP: John Dingell was very smart
DINGELL: Trump is a criminal pic.twitter.com/BLjPWF9OHF
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) February 8, 2019
Trump caved and called it a deal.
— John Dingell (@JohnDingell) January 25, 2019
To end with a positive tone, here is part of Dingell’s final message, in which he praises his wife, “But I would be remiss in not acknowledging the forgiveness and sweetness of the woman who has essentially supported me for almost 40 years: my wife, Deborah. And it is a source of great satisfaction to know that she is among the largest group of women to have ever served in the Congress (as she busily recruits more).”