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Federal Building in Nation’s Capital to be Named for Former House Speaker Tip O’Neill

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) today announced that on Wednesday the House of Representatives will consider a proposal to name a federal building at the foot of Capitol Hill in memory of former Speaker of the House Thomas P. (Tip) O’Neill, Jr.  Boehner credited Pelosi, the first female Speaker of the House, with the proposal to honor the longest continuously serving House Speaker in U.S. history.

A Massachusetts Democrat, O’Neill represented his Boston-area district from 1953-1987 and served for a decade as Speaker, from 1977-1987.  The centennial of his birth will occur on December 9, 2012.

“Tip O’Neill was a man of the House in every sense, whether he was fiercely advocating for his constituents, wrangling votes as Speaker, or reaching across the aisle to President Reagan,” said Speaker Boehner.  “Tip is a giant in the history of the House, and it is fitting to have a building on Capitol Hill bear his name.”

“Speaker Tip O’Neill is a legend in the Congress and a bona fide American hero,” Leader Pelosi said.  “In naming a federal building after him, we will honor his decades of service on behalf of progress for all Americans.  He uniquely understood and believed in the ability of government to improve people’s lives and was a master at using the levers of power for the common good.”  

The prospective “Thomas P. O’Neill, Jr. Federal Building” is located on 2nd Street, SW, between C and D Streets, SW.  It is flanked by the Gerald R. Ford House Office Building and the Hubert H. Humphrey Building, headquarters for the Department of Health and Human Services.  

Previously housing agencies of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the nearly half century old building has been vacant in recent years and is currently undergoing a full-scale renovation.  When reopened in late 2013, the newly refurbished building will be occupied by a mix of executive and legislative branch employees.