Updated Aug 31, 2023 - Politics & Policy

McConnell "medically clear" to continue work after freezing episode, doctor says

Mitch McConnell (R-KY) walks through Statuary Hall on his way to the House Chamber for an address by Israeli President Isaac Herzog's address to a joint meeting of Congress at the U.S. Capitol on July 19, 2023 i

Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on his way to the House Chamber on July 19. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is "medically clear" to continue his work schedule, his doctor said in a release Thursday.

Driving the news: For the second time in a matter of weeks, McConnell appeared to freeze Wednesday while speaking to reporters, sparking renewed concerns about his health.

  • Brian Monahan, the attending physician of the U.S. Congress, said that he had consulted with McConnell and his neurology team.
  • “Occasional lightheadedness is not uncommon in concussion recovery and can also be expected as a result of dehydration,” Monahan added.

Catch up quick: McConnell froze for about 30 seconds during a press conference Wednesday, and remained silent even as aides stepped in to speak with him. He eventually resumed the press conference but needed questions repeated to him.

  • A similar incident occurred in July, and led to McConnell being escorted away from reporters.
  • McConnell spent weeks recovering from a concussion after falling at an event back in March.

The big picture: Wednesday's incident prompted renewed questions regarding age limits for members of Congress, Axios' Hans Nichols writes.

Editor's note: This story was updated with additional information.

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