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October 17, 2019 4:36 pm

US Jewish, Pro-Israel Groups Mourn Sudden Death of Civil Rights Icon Elijah Cummings

avatar by Algemeiner Staff

A man passes by the office of deceased Congressman Elijah Cummings (D-MD), on Capitol Hill, in Washington, DC, Oct. 17, 2019. Photo: Reuters / Tom Brenner.

Many American Jewish and pro-Israel groups expressed condolences on Thursday over the sudden death of US Congressman Elijah Cummings.

In a statement, Arthur Stark, chairman, and Malcolm Hoenlein, executive vice chairman and CEO of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, said of the Democrat from Maryland, “He was a devoted and beloved leader in his home district and served the American people in his distinguished career in Congress. The Conference had many opportunities to interact with him and to host him at various events. He was a true friend of Israel and the Jewish community.”

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) remembered Cummings, who passed away early Thursday morning at the age of 68, as “a strong advocate of the US-Israel relationship.”

“His innovative Youth Program, ECYP, helped forged ties between young people in his beloved Baltimore and youth in Israel,” AIPAC noted. “The pro-Israel community extends our condolences to his family, his constituents and his many admirers throughout the country.”

Jewish Democratic Council of America (JDCA) Chair Ron Klein and Vice Chair and Maryland Board Member Barbara Goldberg Goldman said, “We are devastated by the passing of Congressman Elijah Cummings, known to many as ‘the conscience of the House’ and Chairman of the House Oversight Committee. Cummings was uncompromising in his commitment to the values that truly define what makes America great, including equality and justice for all. Rep. Cummings’ remarkable legacy serves as an inspiration to all who aspire to lead with their values, and the Jewish community is incredibly grateful to him for his persistent leadership, partnership and support.”

“We send our condolences to his wife Maya and the family, friends and loved ones of Rep. Cummings, and are committed to honoring his memory and leadership with ongoing efforts to live up to his own high moral and ethical standards, and work consistently to elect officials who embody and reflect our common values,” the added. “May his name and memory be for blessings.”

Democratic Majority for Israel (DMFI) President and CEO Mark Mellman said, “We are deeply saddened to learn of Chairman Elijah Cummings’s passing. An exemplary leader, Cummings fought tirelessly for the people of Baltimore, for our democracy, for our children and for social justice. We are grateful that Congressman Cummings was also a champion of a strong US-Israel relationship. More than two decades ago, he founded a youth program that sent students from Baltimore to Israel to strengthen their ties and deepen understanding. All Americans are indebted to him and for his unstinting service to our country. We send our condolences to his family and loved ones. May his memory be a blessing.”

Israeli Ambassador to the US Ron Dermer tweeted, “Condolences to the family of Rep. Elijah Cummings, who for many years worked to strengthen ties between the African-American community and Israel, including by bringing hundreds of African-American high school students from Baltimore to Israel.”

The Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) tweeted, “May his memory be a blessing.”

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