(Headline USA) Shortly after it was reported that Sen. John Fetterman, D-Pa., was hospitalized this week, the New York Times published a bombshell report on the extent of Fetterman’s health complications from a stroke he suffered last year.
Fetterman still has a difficult time comprehending other people’s speech and also suffers form a severe hearing disability causing him to hear the voice of the teacher from the “Peanuts” cartoon when he listens to others, the report said.
He also heavily relies on closed captioning tablets, which allow him to read what people have said.
“It’s just a slight delay,” said Marie Gluesenkamp Pérez, D-Wash., “I didn’t notice he was using it at first. Then I was like, ‘Why are they holding it?’ It took me a minute to figure out what was going on.”
Fetterman’s health challenges are a big reason why he refuses to speak with reporters. He is unable to understand their questions in the echoing Senate hallways, his colleagues said.
“We’re going to have to learn our own styles with it,” Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., said, adding that she’s used the closed captions tablet when speaking with him.
“What I was saying was accurate even when I talked fast. I wanted to make sure it was accurate. It was kind of hard to imagine what it would be like to be him,” she said.
“He answers like you would answer anyone,” Klobuchar said. “It’s us that have to get used to it; he’s used to it.”
Even Fetterman’s chief of staff, Adam Jentleson, admitted that Fetterman’s condition likely worsened as a result of staying on the campaign trail after his stroke instead of taking the necessary time to rest and recover.
“What you’re supposed to do to recover from this is do as little as possible,” Jentleson said. “[Fetterman] was forced to do as much as possible—he had to get back to the campaign trail. It’s hard to claw that back.”