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Posted on Tue, Jul 31, 2012 : 1:02 p.m.

Dingell remains approachable within the community

By Letters to the Editor

In both my lives as a Washtenaw County resident and as a faculty remember at EMU, one constant has remained: Congressmen John Dingell continues to represent the 15th district with great integrity, a trait lacking in many elected officials.

Though some may not like all his policies or his politics, Congressman Dingell works consistently to honestly and accurately represent his ideologically diverse and divergent district. Whereas many local or state or federal offices are inaccessible and full of red tape, the Congressmen and his staff are the antithesis: accessible, willing and able to assist constituents on issues large and small.

What has made Congressman Dingell such an effective representative over the years is quite simple, when one sees him at a community picnic, a library exhibit or a parade, his questions are almost always, “What can I do for you? Am I doing what you want or need?” My responses over the years have varied (from), ‘of course’ (to) ‘perhaps you might reconsider this platform or stance.’ In all instances, the Congressman listens, really listens and often acts on these informal exchanges.

To have a congressman so accessible and able makes me believe in the possibility and purpose of representational government even amid the dynamism of web (and) Internet activism. There is something to be said about tangibility and our political process. Sometimes, one just wants to talk to a person in person and with Congressman Dingell such a request is guaranteed.

Jessica ‘Decky’ Alexander

Washtenaw County Resident/ Ypsilanti EMU Faculty member and Director of Academic Service-Learning


Bill Wilson

Sat, Aug 4, 2012 : 3:50 a.m.

Sorry folks, but anyone who could claim that Dinglell has done a good job while turning a blind eye to the tremendous mess the state of Michigan is in because of politicians like him, ought to be selling used cars.


Wed, Aug 1, 2012 : 11:15 p.m.

Dear John - thank you for coaching and mentoring a cadre of potential successors; something that should have been done 20 years ago.


Wed, Aug 1, 2012 : 7:51 p.m.

Is the the approachable congressman planning on having any townhall meetings where he will answer, without just evading, questions on important topics? Sample question. Do you support the current budget plan by which there are $1 trillion plus apending decicits in each of the next 10 years? How will we pay the $750 billion ( assuming an low interest rate of 3%) interest on $25 trillion in debt in the year 2022?


Wed, Aug 1, 2012 : 2:15 p.m.

If Congressman is so approachable, can you explain why he does not answer letters from his constitutes? By any chance did he call DOJ jack-booted-thugs over failed Fast & Furious gun running?


Wed, Aug 1, 2012 : 10:36 a.m.

To the Dingell detractors -- can't you vote him out? I thought that's the purpose of elections. More to the point, one has to examine the mindset of a group voters that would continue to elect and reelect an 86 year old into office.


Wed, Aug 1, 2012 : 2:19 p.m.

When you deliver a new Stadium St bridge 2 months before the election, it buys you a lot of votes in AA. If you go back and look at 2010 results AA was margin of difference, Congressman Dingel lost everywhere else except Redford Twp.

Paul Schreiber

Wed, Aug 1, 2012 : 2:15 a.m.

Congressman Dingell deserves re-election. He co-sponsored legislation that freed up HUD funds to rehabilitate the Hamiliton Crossing affordable apartment complex. (Hamilton Crossing is at the corner of Hamilton and Harriet on the south side of the city of Ypsilanti.) Without Congressman Dingell's diligence and persistance, Hamilton Crossing would be an empty hulk. Thanks to Congressman Dingell, it is now providing needed affordable housing and improving the neighborhood. Congressman Dingell is always there for Ypsilanti. Vote for Congressman John Dingell.


Tue, Jul 31, 2012 : 11:22 p.m.

Representative Dingel is an icon. No wonder the Angry White Men are spitting as they rant, he's been a successful progressive supporting working people and the middle class.


Wed, Aug 1, 2012 : 3:16 a.m.

John Dingell talks a big game about supporting the working and middle class, but he's the king of getting sweetheart deals for the big auto execs who helped run the industry to the ground, so that his stocks stay healthy and his campaign coffers are full.


Wed, Aug 1, 2012 : 1:02 a.m.

Icons are religious portraits painted on planks.


Tue, Jul 31, 2012 : 10:15 p.m.

Dingell should go. His own party stripped him of his committee chairmanship when the Democrats were the majority. We owe Dingell nothing but our thanks for his service and a nice pension. There are plenty of good people who could easily take Big John's place.

Lou Perry

Tue, Jul 31, 2012 : 10:08 p.m.

He does know and read what is in the health care Bill. Putting co-sponsorship of Bills aside, he gets stuff for our district including the costly repairs to the Stadium bridge. His senior position in Congress is very important for Washtenaw and Michigan.

Unusual Suspect

Thu, Aug 2, 2012 : 12:35 p.m.

Herein lies one of our biggest problems in this country: the mindset that we send people to Washington DC to "get stuff" for us.


Tue, Jul 31, 2012 : 8:48 p.m.

Congressman Dingell essentially inherited his seat and has never had a tough challenge as redistricting has always ensured him a safe seat. He's a politician who has frequently painted himself as a representative of the comman man, despite only being a congressman do to nepotism and kept in office by his wife's money. His supporters declare him a Michigan legend, despite the fact that he was born in Colorado, educated in Washington D.C. and has been in Congress since he was 29. He was perhaps one of the biggest proponents of the auto bailout, though he rarely mentioned that the Big Three are perhaps his biggest political contributors, much of his fortune is tied up in auto industry stock and his wife was a long time executive and lobbyist with GM. It was laughable when he called his opponent the last election a tool of Wall Street when you look at some of the names that have funded Dingell's campaigns. I hop when he retires, we will get a congressperson who has more connections to the area and is more respectful to their constituents, even when they disagree. But let's be honest..........Debbie Dingell will be coronated the next congresswoman when her husband steps down.

Dog Guy

Tue, Jul 31, 2012 : 7:48 p.m.

How fortunate America is to have evolved a hereditary mandarin class to rule over us! Having citizens doing their civic duty in government was such a bother.


Tue, Jul 31, 2012 : 7:11 p.m.

Wasn't Dingell instrumental in getting Ann Arbor the Federal funds to rebuild the Stadium Bridge and fund the additional firemen ?


Wed, Aug 1, 2012 : 1:34 p.m.

It may have been. But I do know that he secured the money ($500,000) from the stimulus to rebuild ypsilanti freight house. 1/2 million dollars and we kept 10 guys busy for 3 week. Is that a good way to spark jobs? He's a joke.


Tue, Jul 31, 2012 : 6:40 p.m.

Isn't Dingell one of the people who voted yes on the health care bill so he could read what in it. I am not sure I would last if I approached my job the same way.

David Cahill

Tue, Jul 31, 2012 : 6:38 p.m.

Dingell's health care bill was one of the pieces of legislation that wound up as part of our new affordable health care law, so he is still quite active in progressive legislation. He could have rested on his laurels; he hasn't. Dingell is in attendance at nearly every major Democratic political event. He represents Ann Arbor quite well. He deserves re-election.


Wed, Aug 1, 2012 : 1:36 p.m.

I would argue that that is one reason for him not to be re elected.


Tue, Jul 31, 2012 : 5:54 p.m.

He was pushed out the role as Chairman for the Energy committee in the House by his own party. His office has not issued a major bill in several years (co-sponsor - yes, write - no). It is time to retire, rather than die in office so his wife can inherit the office. Rep. Dingell did great things in his day, but unfortunately his day has passed. Retiring with honor would be his best choice.


Wed, Aug 1, 2012 : 12:09 a.m.

Mr Perry - If he was the power in the House he was in the 1980s, Rep Waxman would have had no chance of unseating him. He no longer has the ear of the people in charge of the party.

Lou Perry

Tue, Jul 31, 2012 : 10:13 p.m.

Mr. Dingell's Chairmanship of the Energy committee was lost because of pressure by Sen. Waxman of California because Mr. Dingell protected the auto industry.