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Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell appears to have another possible medical episode

UPI
Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell appeared to have another medical episode, freezing for more than half a minute when questioned whether he would seek re-election while at an event in Kentucky. File Photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI

Aug. 30 (UPI) -- Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell appeared to have another possible medical episode on Wednesday, freezing for more than half a minute when questioned at an event in Kentucky.

Video footage showed McConnell, 81, trailing off and remaining silent after he was asked if he would seek re-election in 2026.

An aide then stepped in to ask McConnell if he heard the question. She then informed reporters that the lawmaker would "need a minute."

He then answered a few brief questions, which had to be repeated by the aide. He refused to comment on the 2024 presidential race.

"Leader McConnell felt momentarily lightheaded and paused during his press conference today," a spokesperson for McConnell told ABC News.

The incident marked the second time McConnell appeared to have a medical episode at a public event. In July, McConnell was giving a typical weekly briefing when he suddenly froze and went silent, then walked away.

"I'm fine," McConnell said in July when he was asked by reporters about his health.

President Joe Biden -- a Democrat -- called the Republican leader after the July incident, according to ABC News. During the call, McConnell quipped that he "got sandbagged," an apparent reference to Biden's fall during the recent Air Force graduation ceremony.

"Clearly we wish him well, a speedy recovery," White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said at the time. "As you know, the two of them are ... have worked together and have known each other for some time."

That incident came after McConnell was moved to a rehabilitation center in March after being released from a hospital for treatment after a fall.

McConnell had suffered a broken rib and a concussion after he tripped at a dinner event in the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Washington.

The lawmaker is among the oldest politicians in office and is the 13th longest-serving senator in history with 38 years in office.

In 2019, McConnell fractured his shoulder in a fall at his home in Kentucky.

This story has been updated to correct McConnell's position in the Senate.