U.S. Congressman Henry A. Waxman, Chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee, received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree at HUC-JIR/Los Angeles at its Day of Learning for California communal leaders on March 14. In his remarks, Rep. Waxman stated: "I was raised by New Deal Democrats who felt that government had a role in ensuring that everyone has an opportunity to succeed and that a safety net should be available to make sure that no one is marginalized because of age or disability. I have no doubt that what drew me to politics were the esteem I felt for public service and my commitment to Jewish values like the concept in the Haggadah of helping all people be able to realize their full potential. While I do not believe that the role of government is to guarantee the equality of results, I sincerely believe that government does have a profound role in giving all people an equal opportunity to succeed. Some of what I consider to be and my own greatest legislative accomplishments revolve around this principle. And I am very proud to have built a strong record of progressive legislation in the environment, health care, and consumer protection. We have to seize the opportunity to put our country back on the right track, to do some good, and to help improve our society. Our Jewish values teach us to embrace these opportunities every day and to look for opportunities to engage in tzedakah and Tikkun Olam."