Mitch McConnell in hospital with concussion fell after dinner | US News

One of America’s most powerful politicians is hospitalized after suffering a concussion in the US capital.

Mitch McConnell, who is the Republican leader in the Senate – the upper house of Congress – tripped and fell in a hotel on wednesday evening.

The 81-year-old had been to the Waldorf Astoria in Washington DC to attend a private dinner for the Senate Leadership Fund, a campaign committee to which he is tied.

The Kentucky senator is expected to remain in the hospital for “a few days of observation and treatment,” his spokesman David Popp said.

Mr McConnell “is grateful to medical professionals for their care and his colleagues for their warm wishes,” he added.

The politician, who survived polio as a child, has been awake and talking to people and is expected to make a full recovery, said Republican Sen. John Barrasso, who is part of his leadership team.

President Joe Biden tweeted that he wished the Senate Minority Leader a “speedy recovery” and looked forward to seeing him return to the Senate floor.

Mitch McConnell and President Joe Biden in January
Mr. McConnell and President Joe Biden in January

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, a Democrat, said he called McConnell and spoke with his staff “to extend my prayers and good wishes.”

South Dakota Sen. John Thune told reporters he too had been at the dinner and his fellow Republican made his remarks “as usual.”

Mr Thune, who had not seen Mr McConnell go down, added: “It was evidently later in the evening.”

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First elected to the Senate in 1984, McConnell served as Senate Majority Leader from 2015 to early 2021 and Senate Minority Leader since 2021.

In January of this year, he became the longest-serving Senate party leader in US history, having been elected to lead the Republican conference nine times since 2006.

Democrats, including three independents who vote with them, currently hold a 51-49 majority in the upper house.

In 2019, Mr. McConnell tripped and fell at his Kentucky home, sustaining a broken shoulder and then underwent surgery.

Currently in his seventh six-year term, which will last until 2026, he is the third US senator to be treated in hospital in recent weeks.

Democrat John Fetterman is being treated for depression, while Diane Feinstein, also a Democrat, was taken to the hospital last week and later released to recover at home after a bout of shingles.

Democratic absences have been a challenge for Schumer with his party having a slim majority, while Republicans, as a minority party, have had it easier with intermittent absences.


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