(Chris Parker, Headline USA) Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. and Democrat U.S. Senate candidate John Fetterman continues dodging campaign events and debates despite his campaign’s promise to “return to the rigors of campaigning, including debating his opponent, Mehmet Oz,” reported the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
Fetterman continues to campaign for the senate despite suffering a stroke in May. Doctors said that his cognitive abilities were not impacted, yet he has avoided debates and appeared unstable in public outings.
Earlier this week, Fetterman said he would agree to one debate, but offered no specifics and no indication that his campaign was ready for such a purported event, leading many to suspect it was a stall tactic.
He was hospitalized in 2017 after unusual swelling. During his visit, doctors diagnosed him with atrial fibrillation and decreased heart pump. That diagnosis was not made public until his stroke in May.
He also nearly collapsed at the US Capitol in 2019. The nurse who attended him attributed the event to overheating.
However, voters still elected Fetterman as the Democrat candidate for the November midterm elections. He celebrated while recovering in the hospital.
Oz has suggested that Fetterman is unlikely well enough to serve if he can’t even campaign. His communication limitations raise concerns about his ability to properly represent his constituents under the intense pressure that senators face.
While the Post-Gazette ultimately took a partisan stand against Dr. Oz, it also acknowledged that “live debate is the best way to assure voters Mr. Fetterman is up to the job…Voters have a right to know whether their prospective senator can do the job — including handling the give-and-take of a vigorous debate.”
Oz isn’t the only doctor questioning Fetterman’s campaign. Other leading cardiologists unaffiliated with his campaign speculate that he’s suffering from another undisclosed condition. Fetterman and his wife say that he received a defibrillator to treat the A-fib, but doctors say that’s not what the device is for.
His campaign has also cited “obvious struggles with auditory processing and speech” but are refusing to allow his doctors to be interviewed about his health.