Rep. Henry Waxman hospitalized

Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-Beverly Hills) was admitted to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center on Tuesday after fainting in his Los Angeles office, a spokeswoman for the 69-year-old congressman said.

Waxman had felt “unwell” before fainting, spokeswoman Karen Lightfoot said, but on Wednesday he was “in good spirits” and feeling better. She said the congressman remained in Cedars-Sinai to undergo evaluations and “routine testing.”

Waxman had no known health problems before fainting, said Gene Smith, chief of staff for Waxman’s longtime colleague, Rep. Howard L. Berman (D-Valley Village).

“I have absolutely no idea why he’s in the hospital,” Smith said. “He’s actually in very good shape.”


Waxman had returned to Los Angeles from Washington for the weeklong congressional recess after a personal legislative victory. He co-wrote an ambitious energy and climate-change bill that passed the House, 219 to 212, on Friday. The Waxman-Markey Clean Energy Bill is the first national legislation aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

As chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Waxman also is expected to help craft the chamber’s healthcare legislation. He has served 18 terms.

The California lawmaker also has close ties to the White House through his former chief of staff, Phil Schiliro, who serves as President Obama’s liaison to Congress.

In 1992, Waxman introduced the first bill in Congress to stabilize the climate.

He also has worked to develop water quality standards, pesticide regulations, nursing home quality standards and anti-tobacco legislation. From 2007 to 2009, Waxman chaired the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, the House’s principal investigative committee.