Senators Who Have Had Strokes Say John Fetterman Can Do The Job

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WASHINGTON ― John Fetterman’s gradual betterment from a changeable has go a Republican onslaught constituent successful the Pennsylvania U.S. Senate race, but 2 senators who precocious suffered strokes said Fetterman’s wellness shouldn’t beryllium an issue.

Like Fetterman, Sens. Ben Ray Lujan (D-N.M.) and Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) had strokes this year, but some returned to enactment and person been doing their jobs. They said Fetterman would beryllium capable to bash the job, too.

“We’re walking around, we’re having conversations, we’re talking to people, we’re engaged,” Lujan told HuffPost connected Wednesday. “Cognitive quality is strong. And truthful I’m assured of the enactment that John Fetterman volition bash erstwhile he’s elected U.S. senator.”

Lujan, 49, was treated for a changeable successful his cerebellum successful February and returned to enactment a period aft a country that relieved unit successful his brain. Van Hollen, 63, was hospitalized concisely successful May aft suffering a “minor stroke” caused by a venous teardrop astatine the backmost of his head.

“I judge he’ll beryllium capable to rebound and, based connected what I’ve heard him accidental his doc said, he’ll person a afloat recovery,” Van Hollen said. “I deliberation it’s astute for him to instrumentality the clip helium needs.”

Republicans person demanded that Fetterman, who had a changeable successful May earlier winning the Democratic primary, hold to a bid of debates against Republican nominee Mehmet Oz, suggesting that his ongoing betterment and sometimes halting code connected the run way should disqualify him from being capable to service successful the Senate. (Republicans successful different national contests, specified arsenic the Georgia Senate race, have refused to debate their opponents.)

Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), who is retiring, amplified the onslaught this week, arguing that a legislator indispensable beryllium susceptible of thorough statement and treatment successful bid to bash the occupation properly.

“If he’s not capable to bash that, past frankly, he’s not going to beryllium capable to beryllium an effectual senator, and Pennsylvania voters ought to cognize that,” Toomey said portion campaigning successful the authorities for Oz, a retired surgeon and erstwhile TV amusement host.

On Wednesday, Fetterman agreed to 1 debate.

Fetterman, 53, said his changeable was owed to a humor clot caused by atrial fibrillation successful his heart. He said helium suffered nary cognitive harm but has acknowledged that the changeable impaired his auditory processing and speech. He returned dilatory to campaigning successful person, precocious mocking Oz for utilizing the connection “crudité” to picture a veggie tray.

The Oz run responded with what mightiness beryllium 1 of the astir judgmental wellness insults successful run history: “If John Fetterman had ever eaten a rootlike successful his life, past possibly helium wouldn’t person had a large changeable and wouldn’t beryllium successful the presumption of having to prevarication astir it constantly.”

Sen. Ben Ray Lujan (D-N.M.), shown present  astatine  an Aug. 2 quality    league  astatine  the U.S. Capitol, said helium  offered enactment    to John Fetterman aft  the Pennsylvanian's stroke.
Sen. Ben Ray Lujan (D-N.M.), shown present astatine an Aug. 2 quality league astatine the U.S. Capitol, said helium offered enactment to John Fetterman aft the Pennsylvanian's stroke.

Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call via Getty Images

Lujan said helium had reached retired to Fetterman “to connection support” and that the 2 had spoken respective times. The New Mexico Democrat said helium greatly appreciated however Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) had sent him “daily inspirational videos” aft his stroke.

“It got to the constituent wherever I would look guardant to that video, and sometimes it was emotional, but it meant a batch to me,” Lujan said. “When immoderate of america during times successful our lives are going done thing that tin beryllium tough, enactment helps.”

Lujan received a bipartisan lasting ovation erstwhile helium returned to the Senate enclosure conscionable a period aft his stroke.

Fetterman’s run released a missive from his doctor saying that if helium takes his medicine and follows aesculapian advice, “he should beryllium capable to run and service successful the U.S. Senate without a problem.”

Van Hollen called GOP attacks implicit Fetterman’s wellness “out of bounds.”

“I don’t deliberation politicians should beryllium 2nd guessing the judgments of aesculapian professionals, and I cognize that Dr. Oz sometimes presents himself arsenic 1 of those. I would perceive to doctors who cognize what they’re talking astir successful this area,” helium added.

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