Give the gift
that gives back all year

Make your tax-deductible gift before December 31st!

John Dingell Weighs In On Presidential Election, Government Unity

Is there perfection here?” says Dingell. “Hell no, there’s not perfection here. But there is opportunity.”

You’re going to have perfect government when you die and go to heaven.”

Joan Isabella/WDET

Former Rep. John Dingell

Former Democratic Congressman John Dingell, who served in the United States Congress longer than anyone in history, says he was proud of the relationships he had with Republicans. He spoke with Detroit Today host Stephen Henderson during this month’s Mackinac Policy Conference about the upcoming presidential election, his career in Congress, and his passion for the issue of expanding health insurance.

Dingell says having participation from both parties is a key to having a representative government. Today, however, Dingell says he sees a different attitude. He says that animosity toward President Obama is undeserved and is connected to the enthusiasm for Donald Trump.

My old dad used to have a saying for people like that, which is ‘The only reason they take their foot out of their mouth is to change feet,’” says Dingell.

He notes that the criticism of Trump in the media and from people of both parties has been harsh, but says he’s terrified at the thought of a Trump presidency. Among Republicans, says Dingell, he’s heard embarrassment and outrage.

He seems to be setting up a dual party, which is different than and totally alien to the people I’ve known,” he says. “The Republicans I’ve known and have worked with have been decent people.”

Dingell also sharply criticized Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) for not dropping out of the presidential race, again using a phrase he says his father used to use. “He’s just an assistant Republican,” he says.

The former “dean” of Congerss says that the government’s job is to give Americans “a hand up, not a hand-out.” People seem to forget, he says, that it should be creating circumstances that set it up for future success. 

Is there perfection here?” says Dingell. “Hell no, there’s not perfection here. But there is opportunity.”

You’re going to have perfect government when you die and go to heaven,” he says.

To hear more of the conversation with John Dingell, including his thoughts on Bernie Sanders and the Affordable Care Act, click on the audio link above.

Image credit: Joan Isabella/WDET

Filed Under: #mpc16

This post is a part of 2016 Elections: Issues & Candidates.

You take voting seriously, and so do we. 

WDET is committed to providing honest, fair, inclusive coverage of the candidates and issues facing the citizens of Southeast Michigan in the 2016 elections.

Join us now and all the way to the November General Election to be an informed voter.

 

About the Author

Wait a second, there‚Äôs more…

Sen. Gary Peters: We Need to Work Toward Shutting Down Straits of Mackinac Oil Pipeline

U.S. Rep. Candice Miller Explains Trump Endorsement, Leaving Congress

Sen. Debbie Stabenow Warns Against Ignoring Upper Peninsula

The Slow Roll Rolls on Mackinac Island

Why Are Foundation Leaders Pushing for Better Preschool In Michigan?

State Senate Leaders Say Substantive Change Must Happen for DPS

Meet the New Director Of the Detroit Institute of Arts

Gov. Snyder Says GOP Plan for DPS Sets School District "On The Path" to Recovery

How Is Work Progressing on the Gordie Howe Bridge?

Can Governor Snyder Re-Brand His Administration and Save His Legacy After Flint?

How Has The "Detroit Future City" Blueprint For The City's Future Fared?

Bipartisanship in Congress: It's a thing, say Reps. Debbie Dingell and Mike Bishop

The Election of Our Disaffection: Heads of Truscott Rossman PR Firm Talk 2016

The Slow Roll Takes A New Path on Mackinac Island

The 16 People You Meet At The Mackinac Policy Conference

Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel Talks Regional Transit, His Political Future

Head of Michigan ACLU Wishes Flint Would be Bigger Focus For Mackinac Conference

Organizers Talk About Focus of This Week's Mackinac Policy Conference

Op-Ed: Detroit Regional Chamber Recognizes the Role of Small Business at 2016 Mackinac Policy Conference

Universities Research Corridor Generates $950 Million Impact

AG Bill Schuette Talks Prosecution out of Rape Kits, and His Political Future

Will Congressman Dan Kildee Run for Governor in 2018?

We want to hear from you.
Share your thoughts and opinions: