In order to avoid a debate with his Republican rival Dr. Mehmet Oz, 53-year-old lieutenant governor of Pennsylvania John Fetterman, who is now running for the U.S. Senate, cited his recent stroke as rendering it medically impossible.
Even as Democrats chose Fetterman to be their nominee, he was still recovering from a stroke that he had in May. While he was recovering in the hospital, his wife gave his victory speech, and Fetterman hasn’t attended many live events since his health scare.
Three months after the stroke, Fetterman’s team now claims that the candidate’s speech and “auditory processing” abilities are still improving, and as a result, the candidate won’t be participating in a live debate with Oz.
According to a statement issued by his campaign, Fetterman said in announcing that he would not be taking part in the debate against Oz, “As I recover from this stroke and improve my auditory processing and speech, I look forward to continuing to meet with the people of Pennsylvania.”
New John Fetterman statement says he’s not participating in a debate the first week of September against Dr. Oz, and says he will continue to “recover from this stroke and improve my auditory processing and speech.” https://t.co/eGbZnkqp1f pic.twitter.com/BPrceSFkEh
— Alexi McCammond (@alexi) August 31, 2022
After Fetterman suffered a stroke, his doctor disclosed that the Democrat with Ivy League credentials had rejected medical advice for at least five years before the stroke.
According to Newsweek, Dr. Ramesh Chandra, Fetterman’s cardiologist, stated in May, “I first saw John in 2017.” “He was experiencing swelling in his feet and came to get it checked out. That is when I diagnosed him with atrial fibrillation, an irregular heart rhythm, along with a decreased heart pump.”
The doctor disclosed that Fetterman then disregarded his doctor’s guidance for five years.
“I had prescribed medications along with improved diet and exercise and asked him to follow up again in the following months,” wrote Chandra. “Instead, I did not see him again until yesterday. John did not go to any doctor for 5 years and did not continue taking his medications.”
Valiant News reported earlier this month that Fetterman has no live engagements scheduled. Instead, Fetterman’s campaign gave volunteers the chance to take part in training sessions on how to “ratio” his enemies on Twitter. However, Fetterman has participated in at least two live events this month, including a rally alongside Joe Biden.
Some questioned whether Fetterman presently possesses the mental and physical capacity to serve as a U.S. Senator after one campaign event exposed the depth of his stunted speech.
John Fetterman today held his second rally since having a stroke in which he spoke for less than 5 minutes.
Here are the highlights. pic.twitter.com/lwo40YWcZi
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) August 23, 2022
Following the event with Biden, even CNN acknowledged that, although conveying Democratic talking points, Fetterman’s speech lacked some polish.
According to the network, “Fetterman was on message, but often halting in his speech and occasionally dropped words mid-sentence.”