Senator McConnell Hospitalized After Tripping at DC Hotel

From a New York Times story by Carl Hulse headlined “Mitch McConnell Is Hospitalized After Tripping at Washington Hotel”:

Senator Mitch McConnell, the Kentucky Republican and minority leader, had a concussion from a fall at a Washington hotel Wednesday evening and was being treated at a local hospital.

“Leader McConnell tripped at a dinner event Wednesday evening and has been admitted to the hospital and is being treated for a concussion,” the spokesman, David Popp, said. “He is expected to remain in the hospital for a few days of observation and treatment.”

Others familiar with the events said the accident occurred at a fund-raising dinner at the Waldorf Astoria hotel on Pennsylvania Avenue between the White House and the Capitol, which is the former Trump hotel. Multiple Republican senators attended a reception at the hotel but said they were not at the smaller dinner that followed and did not witness the accident.

After his fall, Mr. McConnell was taken by ambulance shortly after 9 p.m. to George Washington University Hospital.

It was unclear how long Mr. McConnell, 81, might be absent from the Senate, which conducted votes on Thursday. A number of senators have been away from the Senate in recent weeks with medical issues. Mr. McConnell, who had polio as a child that left him with a slight limp, has had other serious falls.

Before the accident on Wednesday, Mr. McConnell had been at the Capitol well into the evening, helping to secure a victory for Republicans: an overwhelming Senate vote to overturn a new District of Columbia criminal code that reduces mandatory minimum sentences for some violent offenses.

The vote sent the measure to President Biden’s desk. Mr. Biden had initially opposed the legislation, but he abruptly changed course last week by saying he would sign it, a move that Mr. McConnell described on Wednesday as “flip-flopping.”

Senator John Fetterman of Pennsylvania, a first-term Democrat who has worked remotely for weeks while receiving treatment for clinical depression, has been unable to vote because he has not been physically present in the Senate. Last week, the absence of Mr. Fetterman and other Democratic senators forced Vice President Kamala Harris to cast the tiebreaking vote on two of Mr. Biden’s judicial nominations.

Mr. McConnell, the former majority leader, is the longest-serving Senate Republican leader in history. Last year, he overwhelmingly won re-election as the party’s Senate leader, holding off Senator Rick Scott of Florida in the first challenge he had faced since assuming the Republican leadership post in 2007.

Carl Hulse is the Times chief Washington correspondent and a veteran of more than three decades of reporting in the capital.

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