McConnell freezes during a news conference, prompting Concern from colleagues

Midway through his introductory remarks, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell appeared to freeze and was unable to immediately begin speaking. He departed the press conference abruptly later that day.

After stating that Republicans were on track to passing a significant defence budget bill this week, McConnell opened the GOP’s leadership weekly news conference.

In addition to a string of wins, McConnell said, “We’ve had good bipartisan cooperation.”

Before other GOP leadership members could step in, he paused and stayed silent for almost 20 seconds while gazing forward. Senators Joni Ernst and John Barrasso, who were standing by McConnell’s side, inquired as to whether he was alright, but McConnell made no audible reply.

Any other methods you’d like to use to address the media? Barrasso interrogated McConnell before recommending a break.

Barrasso led McConnell away from the dais, saying to the other members of the leadership team, “I’ll take him back.”

After the news conference ended, reporters approached McConnell, 81, who had been absent for a while, and asked him to comment on what had happened.

“I’m fine,” McConnell said.

McConnell’s aide, who requested anonymity because they weren’t authorized to speak about the situation in public, claimed the minority leader felt “lightheaded.”

He took a moment to move aside since he was feeling unsteady. He returned to conduct the Q&A, the assistant added.

Later on Wednesday night, McConnell said that President Biden had contacted him to see how he was doing.

The president called to check on my wellbeing. McConnell grinned and added, “I told him I got sandbagged.

When questioned by reporters if he had seen a doctor since the incident, McConnell did not respond. He also did not elaborate on what specifically occurred to him during the encounter earlier that day.

“I’m good. That’s the crucial component, McConnell said.

When the Democrats held their news conference just after the Republicans, Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer of New York answered questions about what had transpired. “I always wish Leader McConnell well,” he retorted.

The event happened approximately four months after McConnell slipped and cracked a rib at a private dinner at a Washington hotel in early March. McConnell also had a concussion. The Kentucky Republican missed over six weeks of Senate proceedings while he was recovering from his wounds. He went back to the Senate in April.

McConnell has had some difficulties over the last two months. His gait has always been a little stiff, but it has been noticeably more careful because he overcame polio as a child. He has often been unable to hear the questions that reporters have posed to him. Early in June, Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) had to lean in and clarify to McConnell what the question was during a press conference.

Barrasso, an orthopaedic surgeon who formerly held the office of Wyoming Medical Society president, claimed on Wednesday that he approached the GOP leader privately and went down the hall with him to see how he was doing.

The third-ranking GOP leader, Barrasso, told reporters later, “I simply wanted to make sure everything was good with him, and it was. He continued, “I’ve been worried ever since the first time—ever since he was hurt a couple of months ago.” I’m still worried,” said the speaker.

Barrasso claimed that McConnell appeared to be as good as he had been in previous weeks after his return and interaction with the media.

Barrasso declared, “I believe he has made a tremendous recovery, is conducting our conference admirably, and was able to respond to every query the press put to him today. Additionally, you might have noticed that he provided more answers today than he typically does.

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