While John McCain Recovers From Blood Clot, McConnell Delays Health Care Vote

Unexpected news came out of D.C. Saturday evening when it was announced that the U.S. Senate health care vote had been put on hold, a decision made by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell in hopes of providing enough time for Senator John McCain to recover from surgery to remove a blood clot:

McCain underwent surgery in Phoenix on Friday to remove a blood clot from above his left eye. “On the advice of his doctors, Senator McCain will be recovering in Arizona next week,” said McCain spokeswoman Julie Tarallo. A statement from the Mayo Clinic Hospital in Phoenix said the senator is resting at home “in good condition” and that “the surgery went very well.”

The news of McCain’s health issue came as a surprise, not only for Americans but also for the Senate where the health care vote was expected to be so close that Republicans were willing to wait for McCain’s return to help pass the bill. His presence is needed after Republican Senators Susan Collins (ME) and Rand Paul (KY) indicated they would not support the bill that has been unpopular with many Americans. A June 28 Fox News poll showed just 27 percent of voters supported the Republican plan to replace the Affordable Care Act aka Obamacare.

Meanwhile, McCain continues to recover at home. The Mayo Clinic, at the request of his office, released a statement:

“Following a routine annual physical, Sen. John McCain underwent a procedure to remove a blood clot from above his left eye on Friday, July 14, at Mayo Clinic Hospital in Phoenix. Surgeons successfully removed the 5-cm blood clot during a minimally invasive craniotomy with an eyebrow incision. Tissue pathology reports are pending within the next several days.

“The Senator is resting comfortably at home and is in good condition. His Mayo Clinic doctors report that the surgery went ‘very well’ and he is in good spirits. Once the pathology information is available, further care will be discussed between doctors and the family. In the meantime, his Mayo Clinic care team will not be conducting interviews.”

The office of Senator McCain also released the following statement:

“Senator McCain received excellent treatment at Mayo Clinic Hospital in Phoenix, and appreciates the tremendous professionalism and care by its doctors and staff. He is in good spirits and recovering comfortably at home with his family. On the advice of his doctors, Senator McCain will be recovering in Arizona next week.”

McCain’s office noted they would provide more information on his progress as it became available. With the health care vote on hold, McConnell plans to carry on with other business and nominations while McCain recuperates.

McCain, 80, who spent six years as a prisoner of war in the infamous “Hanoi Hilton” during the Vietnam War, is the senior U.S. Senator from Arizona and serves as chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee.