Kweisi Mfume is officially a U.S. Congressman once again.
On Tuesday, the Democrat was sworn in to Congress by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi to represent Maryland’s 7th congressional district through the rest of this year.
“We’re very honored to have the Maryland Delegation... and all of us to welcome Rep. Mfume back to the House of Representatives, where he served with such distinction,” Pelosi said. “We look forward to again welcoming him when we’re all together, hopefully in a short period of time.”
Mfume represented the 7th district from 1987 to 1996; he left to head the NAACP and was replaced by the late Elijah Cummings, who served until his death last October.
Taking off his face mask for a speech in the House before his swear-in, Mfume thanked his supporters and said his work would begin immediately.
“Today marks my return to this body after 24 years,” he said. “I do so against the backdrop of COVID-19 and in the midst of our nation’s greatest health crisis in the 21st century. We’re also locked in our nation’s greatest economic collapse.
“It is against that backdrop that I welcome and embrace both this challenge and opportunity before me,” he said.
Mfume’s wife, Tiffany, held a Bible for her husband as he took the oath of office. Afterward, Mfume, his wife, Pelosi and the House’s Maryland Delegation posed for a photo, with six feet of space between the legislators.
“Congressman, I hope you’re observing all of the Maryland flag and Orioles masks,” Pelosi said as the group posed.
Mfume won the special Democratic primary election to carry out the rest of Cummings’ term in February and the general special election late last month. He is currently campaigning to hold on to his seat in the general primary election on June 2, alongside Maya Rockeymore Cummings, Elijah’s widow, and state senator Jill Carter.