Former President Barack Obama spoke at the late Rep. Elijah Cummings’ funeral on Friday, declaring that the congressman was an example of kindness in a “strong man.” “There’s nothing weak about kindness and compassion,” Obama told the audience at New Psalmist Baptist Church in Baltimore, according to The New York Times. “There’s nothing weak about looking out for others. There’s nothing weak about being honorable. You’re not a sucker to have integrity and to treat others with respect.” Obama then referenced a sign behind him that read “the Honorable” Elijah Cummings, and said the late representative exemplified the title. “That’s a title that we confer to all kinds of people who get elected to public office. We’re supposed to introduce them as honorable. But Elijah Cummings was honorable before he was elected to office. There’s a difference,” he said. “There’s a difference if you were honorable and treated others honorably outside the limelight.”
According to The Atlantic, Obama also brought attention to the current political climate, and said Cummings would encourage everyone to “give voice to the voiceless... opportunity to those not born to it, and to preserve and nurture our democracy.” Cummings was the target of various attacks by President Trump, who called the Baltimore representative “a brutal bully” who did a “a very poor job” representing his “disgusting, rat and rodent infested” district.