Former NY Rep. Sherwood Boehlert dies at 84

Former NY Rep. Sherwood Boehlert dies at 84
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Former Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (R), who represented districts in central New York for 24 years, died on Monday at the age of 84, according to a statement from his former staff cited by the Observer-Dispatch.

Boehlert served in the House from 1983 to 2007, representing three different congressional districts.

Boehlert, who for six years served as chair of the House Science Committee, penned an op-ed in The Washington Post in 2010 urging his former Republican colleagues to “open their minds” to rethinking the party’s stance on climate change and global warming.

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He said it is "incomprehensible” that individuals had a “dogged determination” to discredit prominent scientists and their findings.

“Why do so many Republican senators and representatives think they are right and the world's top scientific academies and scientists are wrong? I would like to be able to chalk it up to lack of information or misinformation,” he added.

Boehlert, during his time in office, played a role in writing a provision of the 1990s Clean Air Act, and headed two congressional delegation trips in Antarctica to shine a light on efforts to grasp climate change and the threat it posed to the continent’s ice sheets, according to the Observer-Dispatch.

Before entering political office he reportedly served in the Army, then worked in public relations. He later spent time as chief of staff to former Rep. Alexander Pirnie (R-N.Y.) and former Rep. Donald Mitchell (R-N.Y.), who succeeded Pirnie.

Boehlert then succeeded Mitchell after winning a congressional bid in 1982. Before that, he served as Oneida County Executive, a position he was elected to in 1979.

Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerHospitals in underserved communities face huge cuts in reckless 'Build Back Better' plan GOP infighting takes stupid to a whole new level Progressive groups urge Schumer to prevent further cuts to T plan MORE (D-N.Y.), who served with Boehlert for 15 years in the House, said he was “saddened” to learn of the passing of his “good friend,” whom he said he shared a locker with at the House gym.

“The rewards of Sherry’s dedication to his district can be seen today: whether at the former Griffiss Air Force base following the revitalization he spearheaded or as the Adirondacks teem with fish and loons thanks in no small part his work on acid rain,” Schumer said in a statement.

“Sherry’s rich legacy, his support of science, his commitment to combating climate change, and his deep love for the Southern Tier and Mohawk Valley will live on for generations to come. My sincere condolences to his wife Marianne, children, and all who loved him,” he added.