Congressman Don Young

WASHINGTON, D.C.U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks today on the Senate floor regarding Congressman Don Young:

“Last week, the United States Congress lost a one-of-a-kind colleague and the state of Alaska lost an unbelievably devoted champion.

“Congressman Don Young, the Dean of the House, was the longest-serving Republican in the history of that chamber. He arrived in 1973. And his fellow Alaskans re-hired him to represent them every two years since.

“Over the decades, Congressman Young’s leadership and advocacy had a literally transformative effect on his home state. He secured resources for Alaska’s infrastructure and its people. I understand his office contains with photographs of Don with no fewer than 10 different presidents, each of whom had signed into law a bill that he’d written.

“Don Young first moved to Alaska in 1959, the same year it became our 49th state. He once explained his rationale like this: ‘I can’t stand heat, and I was working on a ranch, and I used to dream of some place cold, and no snakes, and no poison oak.’

“Well, Alaska sure delivered for Don. And starting with a mayoral election in 1964, he spent practically his entire adult life delivering for Alaska in return.

“Our late colleague across the Rotunda wasn’t just a legendary legislator and committee chairman. He was also a wildly unique character. Even after decades in public service, he remained every bit the former fisher, trapper, construction worker, gold miner, and tugboat captain.

“The Senate sends our prayers to Don’s family, his staff, and his colleagues who miss him already.”


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