WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.) issued the following statement in response to the news that his friend and colleague Steny Hoyer will step aside from his role as Democratic leader for the upcoming Congress.
“Steny Hoyer is my closest friend. He also is one of the most effective leaders and legislators I have ever known. Steny and I both joined the Maryland General Assembly in 1967. He was elected to the State Senate and I was elected to the House of Delegates. We both rose through the ranks and Steny became Senate president before joining Congress. I became Speaker before following him to the House of Representatives. We have grown and matured together as public servants and elected officials who both have taken pride in representing Maryland, which we know is the greatest state in this country. For decades now, Steny Hoyer and I have seen each other through the joyous highs and painful lows in our personal and professional lives. I have witnessed firsthand his commitment to his family, the people of Maryland and our nation.
“As Democratic Whip and, ultimately, as House Majority Leader, Steny Hoyer – working with Democrats in the U.S. Senate and multiple presidents – has helped steer Maryland and our nation through good times and great challenges. Today, he represents the people of Maryland’s fifth congressional district, and helps lead the Democrats in the House of Representatives, with the same sharpness and enthusiasm as he did in when he first joined Congress in 1981. The district and our state are stronger and more prosperous because Steny Hoyer has been on their side.
“Steny has been a defender of women’s rights, the disabled community and working families. He has been at the forefront of efforts to expand the federal presence in Maryland and expand manufacturing in the U.S. He has been a prolific champion for Democratic candidates and was at the center of the strategy that turned the supposed electoral ‘red wave’ into a bare ripple. Steny Hoyer has been a staunch advocate for civil rights and the rule of law. He understands that defending the Constitution and our democracy are sacrosanct. Whatever role he takes on next in Congress, and in life, Steny Hoyer will continue as a national leader and effective advocate for Maryland.”