May 15, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Pennsylvania Lt. Gov Fetterman suffered stroke days before Senate primary


Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, who is running for the state’s Democratic Senate nomination, said in a statement Sunday he's recovering from a stroke he suffered on Friday.

What he's saying: "I hadn't been feeling well but was so focused on the campaign that I ignored the signs and just kept going," Fetterman wrote. "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."

  • “The good news is I’m feeling much better, and the doctors tell me I didn’t suffer any cognitive damage. I’m well on my way to a full recovery. So I have a lot to be thankful for."

What's next: Fetterman on Sunday said he's being kept at Penn Medicine Lancaster General Hospital "for now for observation, but I should be out of here sometime soon."

  • "The doctors have assured me that I’ll be able to get back on the trail, but first I need to take a minute, get some rest and recover," he added. "There’s so much at stake in this race, and I’m going to be ready for the hard fight ahead."
  • It is unclear when Fetterman will return to the trail.

On Tuesday, the day of the Pennsylvania primary, Fetterman's campaign said he will have a standard procedure to implant a pacemaker with a defibrillator.

  • "It should be a short procedure that will help protect his heart and address the underlying cause of his stroke, atrial fibrillation (A-fib), by regulating his heart rate and rhythm."

The big picture: Fetterman is the front-runner for Tuesday's Democratic primary, and the stroke has kept him off the trail the final weekend before the contest.

  • He was supposed to host a meet-and-greet in Lancaster County on Friday morning, per the New York Times, but his spokesperson said at the time the campaign had canceled the event because Fetterman was feeling unwell.

Go deeper ... Primary election guide: Pennsylvania's U.S. Senate race

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