House pays tribute to Walter Jones

Members of the House commemorated the life of Rep. Walter JonesWalter Beaman JonesRepublican Greg Murphy wins special election in NC's 3rd District Early voting extended in NC counties impacted by Dorian ahead of key House race The Hill's Campaign Report: North Carolina special election poses test for GOP ahead of 2020 MORE (R-N.C.), who died Sunday, giving tribute speeches and holding a moment of silence on the House floor on Wednesday. 

Jones, who first came to Congress in 1994, passed away on his birthday at age 76.

Rep. David PriceDavid Eugene PriceNorth Carolina ruling could cost GOP House seats Trump officials say aid to Puerto Rico was knowingly stalled after Hurricane Maria DeLauro enters race to succeed Lowey as Appropriations chief MORE (D-N.C.) reflected on his time getting to know Jones while working on former President Jimmy Carter's campaign in 1976, saying that while they may have gone on to support different parties, he respected him as a colleague for his willingness to work across the aisle.

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"While Walter went on to chart a different course politically, of course, that was uniquely his own. In fact, he found himself frequently at odds with if not one party than the other. But by the same token, he found possibilities for alliances and cooperation in unexpected places and did not hesitate to take those opportunities," Price said. 

"This approach was rooted in Walter's strong conscience and his personal sincerity. He stood out in an age when sincerity is in short supply in politics, earning respect and admiration from both sides of the aisle."

Price highlighted Jones’s commitment to reaching out to Iraq War veterans and the families of fallen soldiers, noting the impact those interactions had on his policy stances. 

"Walter's determined and effective voice for our military, the Marines especially, and his deep love for his home state of North Carolina will be missed in these halls and in the coastal, farming, military communities that make up the 3rd congressional district," he said.

Rep. Thomas MassieThomas Harold MassieGOP lawmaker says newly-released Butina was jailed due to 'Russophobia' O'Rourke gun confiscation talk alarms Democrats Scalise blasts Democratic legislation on gun reforms MORE (R-Ky.) applauded Jones for his humility and willingness to admit when he was wrong, citing his reversal on his position on the Iraq war as an example of his commitment to "the type of courage we could all hope to possess."

"Walter's chief, Josh, who has been with him for 16 years reminded me that people in Washington, D.C., kiss up and punch down," he said.  "Walter often did the opposite, he would kiss down and punch up. He was a true southern gentleman who followed his heart while fighting for his constituents."

Jones’s funeral is slated to be held in Greenville, N.C., on Thursday. 

A special election will be held later this year to fill his seat.

— Updated 10:00 p.m.