HARRISBURG, Pa. ( Associated Press) — Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, the state’s leading Democrat in the U.S. Senate race, suffered a stroke but is on his way to a “full recovery,” his report said. campaign on Sunday.
Fetterman, 52, who confirmed that he has been hospitalized throughout the weekend, assured that the episode will not hinder his campaign. But the unexpected news, just two days before the Pennsylvania primary, cast a cloud of uncertainty over the Democrat’s candidacy in what may be one of his party’s best chances of winning Senate seats.
In a short video message released by his campaign, a seated Fetterman speaking clearly explained that he “just didn’t feel very good” on Friday and decided to go to the hospital at his wife’s insistence. In a written statement he further detailed the situation.
“I had a stroke caused by a clot because my heart was in atrial fibrillation rhythm for a long time,” Fetterman said. Doctors were able to remove the clot, “reversing the stroke,” and managed to control his heart.
“The good news is that I feel much better, and the doctors tell me that I did not suffer any cognitive damage,” he said.
Questions about Fetterman’s health were raised throughout the weekend after he canceled public appearances scheduled for Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
His campaign mentioned a health issue but did not go into detail until Sunday.
At this time, Fetterman has not said how long he will remain in the hospital.
“I am being watched for now, but I should be out soon,” he said in the statement. “The doctors have assured me that I will be able to return to contention, but first I need to take a minute, rest and recover.”
Despite the fact that thousands of early votes have already been cast in the race, Pennsylvania Democrats will choose their general election candidate on Tuesday from four candidates: Fetterman, US Rep. Conor Lamb and state Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta.
The favorite is Fetterman. From the beginning he has led the polls and fundraising, even as party leaders endorsed Lamb. Despite that support, Lamb struggled to reach voters or even outdo Fetterman among primary voters.