U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings died Thursday from complications related to ongoing health issues, according to The Associated Press.
As chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, the 12-term Baltimore congressman was instrumental in the impeachment investigations into President Donald Trump.
Cummings was relentless in challenging the administration. He orchestrated the hearings on Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen and led an inquiry into the U.S. Census controversy.
He investigated family separation at the border and White House security clearances. He led a lawsuit to procure Trump’s financial records.
Last month, he was one of three Democratic committee chairmen to sign a letter accompanying a subpoena of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo as part of the impeachment probe.
His efforts continued in the face of criticism from Trump.
"My constitutional duty to conduct oversight of the executive branch,” he said in a letter after being attacked on Twitter. “But it is my moral duty to fight for my constituents."
Apart from his leadership in the impeachment inquiry, Cummings was known for his efforts to reduce the cost of prescription drugs and and for his role as the senior Democrat on the House Benghazi Committee.
Prior to his tenure in Congress, Cummings served as an attorney, civil rights advocate and 14-year state legislator. In the latter role, he became Maryland’s first African American speaker pro tempore and worked to serve the poor and addicted.
“Elijah’s calm but firm hand will be missed on the Oversight Committee as it proceeds with the difficult work ahead,” House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn said in a statement.
“His dedication to fairness and his ability to navigate the choppy waters of partisanship were the hallmarks of his leadership. There will not be another leader like him.”
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