The pallbearer who closed Senator Mitch McConnell last Thursday at a memorial for Elijah Cummings said that he could not shake anyone's hand who refused to help his Marine veteran brother before he died.
Bobby Rankin explained what was going on when he skipped the Republican and immediately went to greet the president of the Nancy Pelosi house in the Capitol, a day before the one-year anniversary of the loss.
The brother of the 64-year-old, Jerry, lost his 10-year battle with myeloma cancer last October and it is thought that the deadly disease is related to exposure to contaminated water during his service at camp Lejeune in North Carolina.
The Department of Veteran Affairs said that those exposed to solvents, benzene and other chemicals in drinking water were entitled to free health care and other benefits, but Jerry did not receive them, Rankin said.
& # 39; When I saw Mitch McConnell, I only saw my brother's face, & # 39; Rankin said Washington Post about Jerry who died on Friday a year ago. & # 39; Elia Cummings reached across the board and tried to help my brother get his military benefits, and Mitch McConnell was one of the people he contacted. & # 39;
Bobby Rankin refused to shake the hand of senate majority leader Mitch McConnell at a memorial for the late Elia Cummings in the Capitol on Thursday (photo) because he & # 39; refused to help & # 39; his Navy brother Jerry before he died in October
In the video, Rankin House embraces Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-SC) before shaking hands with House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), House Minority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D -NY).
But Rankin bypasses McConnell (R-KY), who stood next to Schumer, hugging Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).
Rankin believes that McConnell is partly to blame for Jerry's death after he never received the invalidity allowance he was entitled to.
& # 39; I could not put my hands in the hand of the man who refused to help someone who served his country, & # 39; Rankin explained. He added: & # 39; I couldn't, because I was thinking about my brother. & # 39;
Senate Majority Leader McConnell seemed stunned by the refusal to shake hands with the memorial service of the deceased congressman.
Images of the moment have been viewed 2.1 million times since it was uploaded on Twitter on Thursday.
McConnell representatives have not responded to the Washington Post's request for comment.
It is unclear why Jerry did not get the benefits.
Rankin was also mentioned as a pallbearer for Cummings' funeral on Friday.
He told the Post: & # 39; If I carry him to his grave, if I could say something to him, I would say something that I had told him many, many times before. What a powerful, powerful man he is. & # 39;
Rankin was seen in the video that House Majority Whip hugged Jim Clyburn (left) and shook hands with House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (right), House Minority Whip Kevin McCarthy and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY).
The clip then shows how Rankin McConnell bypasses to chat with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. Pictured: Rankin shakes Schumer's hand
Despite the stump, McConnell Cummings eulogged during the commemoration and described as a man who not only represented Baltimore, he embodied the & # 39 ;.
& # 39; He celebrated his victories, wanted to argue for his needs and worked on healing his wounds, & # 39; McConnell said.
& # 39; He knew that there was only one reason why a son of sharecroppers, a child who literally had to bear the injuries of intolerance and segregation, could graduate from a law student and eventually become chairman of a powerful committee in the Congress.
Rankin said: & # 39; Elia Cummings reached across the board and tried to help my brother get his military benefits, and Mitch McConnell was one of the people he contacted & # 39;
& # 39; Only one reason, because principals had fought to give children like him a chance. & # 39;
Cummings, who was a leader in President Donald Trump's accusation, was announced Friday by former Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton in his hometown of Baltimore.
Hillary Clinton, who lost to Trump in the 2016 presidential election, also honored Cummings at a funeral service in the New Psalmist Baptist Church in the city.
Cummings, son of sharecroppers, served 22 years in the American House of Representatives before his death on October 17.
He was a fiery civil rights vote who underwent violence from white mafia decades ago while he and other African-Americans wanted to integrate a public swimming pool.
The 13-year-old congressman was credited with helping calm tensions in Baltimore in 2015 when violence broke out after the death of an African-American man, Freddie Gray, in custody.
Cummings served 22 years in the American House of Representatives before his death on October 17. Pictured: the flag-draped chest from Cummings will be guided along the East Front Steps of the US Capital on Thursday
Before his death, Cummings' death led a series of investigations into Trump's administration and business transactions. Pictured from the left: Pelosi, McConnell, Schumer, McCarthy, Hoyer James Clyburn and Senator Ben Cardin, seeing how Cummings' coffin arrives for a ceremony at Capitol's Statuary Hall on Thursday
Cummings was a fierce voice for civil rights that endured violence from white crowds when he wanted to integrate a public swimming pool. Pictured: McConnell and Schumer respect Thursday during a memorial for Cummings in Capitol Hill
McConnell was one of the many who praised Cummings during the memorial service. The senator described Cummings as a man who not only represented Baltimore, he embodied the & # 39;
Cummings was also a high-profile antagonist to Trump, who launched his campaign for June 2015 for the president who promised to tackle illegal immigration and said that Mexico was sending rapists to the United States.
Two years later as president, Trump responded to a weekend of deadly violence at a & # 39; Unite the Right & # 39; meeting in Virginia and said there was & # 39; very nice people & # 39; were on both sides of the demonstrations.
The funeral was held in the convention district of Cummings, which accused Trump earlier this year of being "disgusting, ravaged by rats and rodents".
Cummings responded by saying that Trump should visit his predominantly black convention district. & # 39; I will drive him for hours … I want him to see all the wonderful things that are happening. & # 39;
As chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, Cummings led a series of investigations into Trump's administration and business transactions prior to his death.
He had been a central figure in the Democrats' ongoing investigation into the President's dealings with Ukraine.
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