Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is not buying what the Capitol doctor is selling when it comes to Senator Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) following two instances of seizing up, calling them “neurological events.”
(Video Credit: Forbes Breaking News)
According to the Capitol physician, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with McConnell. He was simply dehydrated. A claim that no one is buying.
“My examination of you following your August 30, 2023 brief episode included several medical evaluations: brain MRI imaging, EEG study and consultations with several neurologists for a comprehensive neurology assessment,” Dr. Brian P. Monahan wrote, according to Fox News. “There is no evidence that you have a seizure disorder or that you experienced a stroke, TIA or movement disorder such as Parkinson’s disease.”
Paul doubts that assessment to put it mildly, saying, “I think it’s an inadequate explanation to say this is dehydration. I’ve practiced medicine for 25 years, and it doesn’t look like dehydration to me. It looks like a focal neurologic event. That doesn’t mean it’s incapacitating, it doesn’t mean he can’t serve, but it means that somebody ought to wake up and say, ‘Wow! This looks like a seizure.'”
“To have the Senate doctor describe it as dehydration,” Paul stated, “I think even non-physicians seeing that probably aren’t really accepting that explanation.”
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“Everybody’s seen the clips, it’s not a valid medical diagnosis for people to say that’s dehydration,” the senator continued.
Monahan previously said he believed McConnell’s repeated freeze-ups were either related to a concussion he sustained earlier in the year or a bout of dehydration.
McConnell has had two instances in recent weeks where he has frozen during a public appearance. He froze up in the middle of a press conference at the Capitol and had to be whisked away by his fellow Republican colleagues. Just over a month later, in Kentucky, McConnell experienced a similar event where he seemed unable to understand or respond to a reporter’s question for an extended period of time.
(Video Credit: PBS NewsHour)
(Video Credit: MSNBC)
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) is just as concerned about McConnell’s health as he is about President Biden’s.
“You can’t have it both ways. You can’t say that you’re concerned about Joe Biden but you’re not concerned about Mitch McConnell. It’s either one or the other,” he asserted, according to USA Today.
“If you’re concerned about the president, then you’ve got to be concerned about other people in leadership. It’s a two-way street. It’s not one or the other,” Hawley said.
According to Business Insider, when McConnell spoke at the Capitol on Tuesday, he did his best to reassure senators returning from the August recess that he was fine and that “August was a busy and productive month for me and my staff back in the commonwealth.”
— BizPac Review (@BIZPACReview) July 31, 2023
— BizPac Review (@BIZPACReview) September 3, 2023
Politico previously reported that some Republicans were considering forcing a special meeting to discuss the future of the GOP’s congressional leadership once they returned from the August recess. That leadership could well be without Mitch McConnell although that particular meeting never took place.
“Minority Whip John Thune (R-S.D.), Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Conference Chair John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) are seen within the GOP conference as McConnell’s most likely successors at the helm. McConnell spoke to all three on Wednesday after his latest freeze at an event in Kentucky, as well as Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), according to people familiar with the conversations,” Politico reported.
All of this may come to a head soon as the media outlet points out, “And September will be a great test of McConnell’s grip on his conference: The government is set to shut down in a month without action, the House and Senate don’t see eye-to-eye on spending levels and the Biden administration wants billions of dollars more for hurricane relief, Ukraine aid and border security.”
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