Senator John Fetterman, the Pennsylvania politician who suffered a stroke while on the campaign trail in 2022, has been hospitalized. According to a statement put out by his office, the Senator was feeling lightheaded while at the Democratic Party retreat and had to head to the hospital because of that lightheadedness.
His office released a short statement describing what happened and claiming that he did not suffer from another stroke like the one he suffered from during the 2022 election, saying:
“Towards the end of the Senate Democratic retreat today, Senator John Fetterman began feeling lightheaded. He left and called his staff, who picked him up and drove him to The George Washington University Hospital. Initial tests did not show evidence of a new stroke, but doctors are running more tests and John is remaining overnight for observation. He is in good spirits and talking with his staff and family. We will provide more information when we have it.”
Here’s the latest report:
Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA) was hospitalized overnight after he reported feeling lightheaded. Fetterman had a stroke in May.
His team says, “Initial tests did not show evidence of a new stroke, but doctors are running more tests and John is remaining overnight for observation." pic.twitter.com/AwmqZQnfsB
— The Recount (@therecount) February 9, 2023
When then-candidate John Fetterman suffered a stroke on the campaign trail, he put out a statement saying “I hadn’t been feeling well, but was so focused on the campaign that I ignored the signs and just kept going … On Friday it finally caught up with me. I had a stroke that was caused by a clot from my heart being in an A-fib rhythm for too long.”
Candidate Fetterman was somehow able to not just recover from that stroke and return to the race in time to beat Dr. Oz, but also to turn the medical event into something of a strength for the campaign. The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reported on that surprising turnaround shortly after election day, saying:
By now, the story is well-known: Four days before Pennsylvania’s May primary election, lieutenant governor and Senate hopeful John Fetterman suffered a stroke. He was still in the hospital when he won the nomination to be the Democrats’ candidate.
Up to that point, the towering Fetterman had been a hale and hearty figure; he lost about 150 pounds in 2018, but otherwise his health had not really been a concern.
The stroke could have meant the end of Fetterman’s Senate campaign. Instead, it provided a way for the candidate to connect with voters on a completely different level: someone who’s been knocked down but gets back up again.
Fetterman’s communications director, Joe Calvello, told the Capital-Star that the Democrat’s team always had thought of itself as the “punk rock campaign,” and gained attention for its use of social media barbs aimed at Oz’s missteps.
[…]That raw imagery of Fetterman struggling resonated strongly with Pennsylvania voters, Calvello said, especially after the debate, where he made verbal missteps and seemed slower to respond to questions than usual.
“We were inundated with emails, with messages on social media, of everyday people saying ‘thanks for doing this, thanks for putting yourself out there,’” he said of the post-stroke reaction.
By: Will Tanner. Follow me on Twitter @Will_Tanner_1