Elijah Cummings passed away early this morning at age 68. It was due to complications from an ongoing health issue, as the NY Post explains:
Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings, the Democratic chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee and a key figure in the impeachment inquiry of President Trump, died Thursday of complications from an ongoing health issue, his office announced. He was 68.
“At approximately 2:45 a.m. on Thursday October 17, 2019, Congressman Elijah E. Cummings (MD-07) passed away at John Hopkins Hospital due to complications concerning longstanding health challenges,” his office said in a statement.
Cummings, who had been absent from Capitol Hill while under medical treatment, had suffered from health issues in recent years. His office didn’t detail what procedure he underwent.
In 2017, he underwent an aortic valve replacement, a procedure used to correct narrowing of the aortic valve in the heart that his aides said was minimally invasive in Cummings’ case, according to the Baltimore Sun.
The operation led to an infection that kept him in the hospital longer than expected. Later, he was hospitalized again for a knee infection, but he said this summer that his health was fine, according to the newspaper.
Mark Meadows responded to his passing:
There was no stronger advocate and no better friend than Elijah Cummings. I am heartbroken for his wonderful family and staff—please pray for them.
I will miss him dearly.
— Mark Meadows (@RepMarkMeadows) October 17, 2019
And Trump also sent out his condolences:
My warmest condolences to the family and many friends of Congressman Elijah Cummings. I got to see first hand the strength, passion and wisdom of this highly respected political leader. His work and voice on so many fronts will be very hard, if not impossible, to replace!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 17, 2019
I know that none of us had a high opinion of Cummings and we have certainly criticized him over the years. But despite that I ask you to keep your comments respectful.