New York Rep Louise Slaughter Dies at Age 88

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Longtime New York Congresswoman Louise Slaughter dies at 88
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17 March, 2018

WASHINGTON-Louise Slaughter, the long-serving New York Democratic congresswoman and the first female to chair the House Rules Committee, died Friday due to injuries sustained from a fall last week. You could hear it in her accent that was with her to the end, and you could see it in the tremendous amount of compassion she showed in more than three decades of selfless service to her constituents and to this Congress.

Slaughter was the longest-serving member of Congress from the state of NY. She represented Rochester in Congress since 1987. Her loss will be deeply felt.

A native of Harlan County, Kentucky, she had a distinct twang and delivery that she employed to critique Republican policy with regularity from the dais and on the House floor. She graduated from the University of Kentucky with a degree in microbiology and later received a Master's in public health after writing a thesis on the problem of bacterial drug resistance.

"Like everyone on the Rules Committee, I loved working with Louise", McGovern said in a statement. She will also get to name a new member to Rules, perhaps a woman, since the other two Democrats on the panel - Reps. She remained nonchalant, however, even while inspiring Republican rage over a short-lived proposal known as "the Slaughter Strategy", in which she considered passing the Senate version of Obamacare without an up-or-down vote - a tactic, she noted, that her Republican colleagues had sometimes used themselves.

Robert Slaughter, her husband of 57 years, died in 2014. So she fought for - and won - passage of the Stop Trading On Congressional Knowledge (STOCK) Act of 2012.

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Together the couple had three daughters and seven grandchildren.

Slaughter was planning to run for re-election for a 17th term. Her efforts to fix the medical research imbalance that emphasized clinical trials on diseases that affect white men rather than those that hit women and minorities disproportionately led to the NIH Revitalization Act of 1993. "May it be a comfort to her family to know that so many around the country mourn with them".

"Her tireless leadership was invaluable to passing legislation to expand access to affordable, high-quality health care and to help young people climb the ladders of opportunity with a good education".

Slaughter authored the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA), leading the bill for fourteen years before it finally passed Congress and was signed into law by President George W. Bush in 2008.


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