Updated: 10/18/19 – 10:16 A.M.
VESTAL, NY (WSKG) – Elected officials from New York state are reacting on Twitter to the death of Congressman Elijah Cummings.
Cummings was a civil rights advocate and chair of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. He represented his Maryland District since 1996.
The Democrat died from complications related to longstanding health challenges, according to the Associated Press. He was 68.
New York U.S. Senator and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer has served in Washington roughly the same amount of time as Cummings. “Elijah Cummings was not just a great congressman, but a great man,” Schumer tweeted. “I pray for his family and for the country when people like Elijah are not with us any longer.”
New York’s other Senator, Kirstin Gillibrand, called Cummings a powerful voice in the fight for justice. “I’m heartbroken to hear of his passing,” she wrote.
Members of the House also reacted to Cummings death.
“Congressman Cummings was a towering leader who dedicated his life to the service of his community and our country,” said 19th District Congressman Antonio Delgado said. “Today, my heart is with his family and loved ones. May he rest in peace and may his power carry on in us all.”
22nd District Congressman Anthony Brindisi offered a similar sentiment. “I am deeply saddened to hear of the passing of @RepCummings,” Brindisi wrote on Twitter. “He was an example of statesmanship and steadfast leadership for his community and us all.”
It was not only Democrats mourning Cummings’ loss.
Among the New York politicians who offered condolences was Southern Tier congressman Tom Reed. Reed said his respect for Cummings transcended their political differences.
“Someone from the other side of the aisle that was a proud Democrat as I’m a proud Republican, really epitomized to me, the definition of a statesman, a classy individual who we all looked up to,” Reed said.
Reed went on to say that Cummings was a model to members of Congress of friendship and how to conduct oneself in public office.**
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has directed flags on all state government buildings to fly at half-staff until Cummings interment.*
*Updated to reflect Governor Cuomo’s announcement to fly flags at half-staff.
** Updated to reflect Congressman Reed’s comments.