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Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi delivered remarks on the Floor of the House of Representatives in honor of former California Congressman Fortney ‘Pete’ Stark, the former Dean of the California Delegation, before leading the House in observing a moment of silence. Below are the Speaker’s remarks:
Speaker Pelosi. Mr. Speaker, I ask for unanimous consent to address the House for one minute.
Speaker Pro Tempore. Without objection, the gentlewoman is recognized.
Speaker Pelosi. Mr. Speaker, we rise to honor the legacy of Representative Fortney ‘Pete’ Stark, who passed away.
With his passing, the country, California and the East Bay community lost a champion of the people and a leader of great courage and compassion, who served in the House of Representatives for 40 years.
Those of us who had the honor of serving with Pete in our California Congressional Delegation have all lost a dear friend.
Pete was a relentless champion for universal health care. He had an unrivaled understanding of the challenges of America’s health system. Whether it was fighting for COBRA to helping working families maintain their coverage during times of financial insecurity, or taking a leading role in writing the Affordable Care Act, Pete always seized opportunities to expand access to quality, affordable health care for all.
Pete will rightly be remembered and celebrated for his commitment to fighting for those in need, particularly America’s children. He fought relentlessly to improve our children’s access to quality education, to protect clean air for them to breathe and clean water for them to drink and leave them a more peaceful world.
Pete leaves behind a legacy that will inspire generations of future lawmakers and he leaves behind a wonderful family whom he adores, who are with us tonight.
May it be a comfort to his wife, Deborah, his children, Jeffrey, Beatrice, Thekla, Sarah, Fish, Hannah and Andrew, his eight grandchildren, two great-grandchildren and the entire Stark family that so many mourn their loss and are praying for them at this sad time.
I ask all members and guests in the gallery to rise for a moment of silence.
Thank you, Mr. speaker. I yield back the balance of my time.
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