What’s wrong with Mitch McConnell? Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell hasn’t been seen in public since he fell at a dinner event. He has been the leader of his party for the longest time in U.S. history. Even though people are worried about his health and his ability to lead, no public statements have been made.
What is keeping people from talking about his health? Find out what’s going on with his health and what it means for the Republicans in charge of Congress.
Did Mitch Mcconnell Have Any Health Problems?
In the eight days since Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell was brought to the hospital after a fall at a dinner event, neither he nor his team had issued a public statement to address the concerns about his health and the Republican leadership in Congress.
While politicians from all parties have sent their best wishes to the Kentucky Republican, others have drawn parallels between the public response to his illness and that given to Senator John Fetterman when he sought treatment for depression. McConnell has been a member of the United States Senate since 1984, making him the longest-serving party leader in American history.
Even among the more traditionalist Republicans, he has earned a reputation as a savvy political tactician.
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden expressed his hope for a rapid recovery and that he and his wife, Jill, “look forward to seeing him back on the Senate floor” after hearing the news of his fall.
Jill and I are wishing Senator McConnell a speedy recovery.
We look forward to seeing him back on the Senate floor. https://t.co/ZIQ0zo8TqZ
— President Biden (@POTUS) March 9, 2023
McConnell’s communications director, David Popp, announced on March 9 that his boss had been hospitalized with a concussion. He also mentioned that McConnell was released from the hospital on March 13 and was “proceeding well” in his recuperation.
Popp added, “At the advice of his physician, the next step will be a period of physical therapy at an inpatient rehabilitation facility before he returns home.” Medical personnel were also treating McConnell for a small rib fracture.
But since then, his office has made no further public comments. Republican Senate Whip and McConnell’s Number Two, Senator John Thune, told reporters on March 15 that he had been texting with his boss but had not spoken with the Kentucky lawmaker directly.
Wave News in Louisville, Kentucky, reached out to a representative for McConnell on March 15 for an update on his health, but the official declined.
The absence of McConnell has led to increased uncertainty over the longevity of the 81-year-old’s leadership of the Senate Republican caucus. An unnamed Republican senator told The Hill that colleagues had “half-jokingly” questioned whether or not the votes for prospective replacements had begun to be counted.
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Meanwhile, they said that the caucus was in “a state of limbo,” adding: “Nobody really knows what the situation is and nobody knows how long he’ll be gone. A couple of folks have said: ‘Who’s in charge right now?'”
Meanwhile, Fetterman, who is receiving treatment for his mental health at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, has been held up as an example of how little public discussion there has been surrounding the health of a public figure.
Republicans in Fetterman’s native state of Pennsylvania have demanded a video “to show us he is alive” after Donald Trump Jr. referred to him as a “vegetable.” The newly-elected Democrat senator had a stroke during the 2022 midterm primaries and is currently recovering.
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