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Timeline: Major Events in Dingell’s Tenure


John Dingell is elected to replace his father, 12-term Rep. John Dingell Sr., after his death.


Dingell joins the Interstate and Foreign Commerce Committee, which later becomes the Energy and Commerce Committee.


John Conyers, now the second most senior Member of the House, joins Dingell’s staff.


Dingell’s committee shepherds the original Clean Air Act into law. He’s also instrumental in its 1990 amendments.


Dingell oversees Medicare’s passage into law.


Dingell’s Endangered Species Act becomes law, and he divorces his first wife and gets custody of their four children.


Dingell’s Energy Policy and Conservation Act is signed into law.


Dingell becomes chairman of the newly renamed Energy and Commerce Committee for the first time. (Henry Waxman chairs one of its subcommittees.) He also marries his second wife, Debbie (Insley) Dingell, then a lobbyist and now a senior executive at General Motors and vice chairwoman of the General Motors Foundation.


Dingell sponsors the Insider Trading Sanctions Act.


Dingell has his closest re-election, defeating Republican Ken Larkin with 59 percent of the vote.


Democrats lose their majority in the House, so Dingell is demoted to ranking member at Energy and Commerce.


Dingell has two heart operations to open a blocked artery.


Dingell celebrates the 50th anniversary of his first election with a party at the National Building Museum.


Democrats regain the majority in the House, and Dingell becomes chairman of Energy and Commerce again.


Henry Waxman ousts Dingell as chairman of Energy and Commerce, and Dingell becomes chairman emeritus, taking an interest in health care legislation. Earlier in the year Dingell had surgery to replace his left knee.

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