- Associated Press - Monday, February 24, 2014

Reaction to word that Democratic U.S. Rep. John Dingell of Michigan, the longest-serving congressman in history, will not seek re-election and will retire at year’s end:

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John Dingell has earned the distinction of being both the longest-serving member of Congress in U.S. history and one of the most influential legislators of all time. … And as an original author of the Affordable Care Act, he helped give millions of families the peace of mind of knowing they won’t lose everything if they get sick. Today, the people of Michigan - and the American people - are better off because of John Dingell’s service to this country.” - President Barack Obama.

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“He has been a player on every significant piece of legislation that has helped make America a more just, fair, and free country for over half a century. … I’ve never known a man who has been a better champion of the American worker, and he deserves a great deal of credit for the resurgence of the iconic American automobile industry.” - Vice President Joe Biden.

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Rep. Dingell has shown the unique ability to put politics aside and work across party lines to help improve the quality of life for those he represents. Throughout his distinguished career, he has stood up for working families and worked to strengthen the economy. He has been a strong voice for civil rights, helped guarantee equal access and diversity in the Michigan school system, has consistently fought for our veterans, and led conservation efforts and worked to protect the environment.” - Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder.

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John Dingell is a supreme fighter for working men and women who has built a record of accomplishment second to none. I have known no better person in government during my 35 years in Congress. His rare combination of legislative skill, steely determination, hard work and generosity of spirit have helped him play a vital role in almost every major congressional initiative over the last half century, including the civil rights revolution, historic protections for the environment, the establishment of Medicare and passage of landmark health insurance reforms.” - U.S. Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., who also is retiring this year.

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“Nobody has done more for Michigan than John Dingell. For nearly 60 years, the Dean of the House has dedicated his life to public service and has done so with honor and distinction. He has been a critical voice on important issues like civil rights, protecting the environment, supporting our auto industry, and strengthening health care in America. John has been a mentor and a personal friend, and it has been an honor to work with him to represent Michigan families.” - U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich.

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“It has been a real pleasure working closely with ‘Big John’ through the years on a number of issues facing our country. From spearheading the recovery of the auto industry, to ensuring our drug safety laws are complete, to updating our pipeline safety standards, he and I have had a strong bipartisan partnership. And, on the occasion we may disagree, we’ve never been disagreeable. The term ‘legendary’ will always be associated with the name ‘John Dingell.’ Following in his father’s footsteps, John always put his beloved Michigan constituents first throughout his nearly six decades of public service.” - U.S. Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich.

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John Dingell’s service to the people of Michigan will endure for generations, long after he leaves the House of Representatives. The Chairman’s work can be seen in Michigan’s clean air and water, in the auto factories that employ thousands of Michigan workers, and through the quality health care that his work made available to our kids, families, and seniors.” - Mark Schauer, Democratic gubernatorial candidate who represented south-central Michigan in Congress in 2009-10.

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