McConnell ends press conference suddenly and states that he is “fine.”

Mitch McConnell

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell paused and looked unable to continue for more than 30 seconds as he grabbed the podium on Wednesday at his weekly news conference with senior Senate GOP leaders. As other leaders continued their news conference, third-ranking Republican and physician Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming went a short distance with McConnell towards the Senate floor.

Moments afterwards, McConnell came back. When questioned about the incident and if it was connected to his health problems following a fall earlier this year that resulted in a concussion, he responded, “I’m fine,” and assured reporters that he was still able to perform his duties.

Later, McConnell claimed that President Biden, the minority leader’s old Senate colleague, had phoned to check on him. In apparent allusion to Biden’s accident at the U.S. Air Force Academy graduation, where he stumbled over a sand bag, McConnell said, “I told him I got sand-bagged,” When asked how he was feeling right now, McConnell responded, “I’m fine.”

Barrasso had earlier emphasised to reporters that when McConnell came back to speak to the media, “he answered more questions than he normally does.” McConnell’s health is something he claimed to have “no new concerns” about.

The 81-year-old Kentucky Republican, who has been the party’s leader in the Senate for the longest period in American history, was hospitalised in March after falling at a gathering of GOP contributors in Washington. After receiving concussion treatment, he was released after five days. McConnell walks with a limp as a result of having had polio as a youngster, and he has had numerous falls and health problems. He has spoken openly about his experience with that illness, which he was diagnosed with prior to the creation of a polio vaccination. In 2018, he used his own struggle as inspiration to end the illness globally. In his 2016 memoir, The Long Walk, he also discussed his experience with performing difficult workouts to be able to walk while combating polio.

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