The question of whether Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who is serving his seventh term in office, will seek re-election in 2026 was put to him during a press conference on Wednesday (August 30) in Covington, Kentucky. He couldn’t hear, so he asked the reporter to ask the question twice.
When he eventually got the question, he laughed for a few second before going completely still. One of his assistants then approached him and questioned him about the topic. His assistant told the media to wait for him for a minute after he murmured, “Yes,” but then hesitated for a further five seconds.
Another of his assistants approached him and asked if he wanted to go outside with them before adding, “Come with us.” He gave off the impression of murmuring “Okay,” but he actually gave the go-ahead for another query. They reminded them to speak out and asked if anyone else had any questions.
He was then questioned about Daniel Cameron, Kentucky’s current Republican attorney general, who declared his intention to run for governor in May 2022, sidestepping the query that had been posed before the moment became frozen. McConnell retorted, “I think the governor’s race is going to be very close.
Donald Trump’s latest indictment in Georgia was the subject of the last query he fielded, but Mitch McConnell sidestepped it as well before being led from the podium. McConnell “felt momentarily lightheaded and paused during his press conference today,” according to a later statement.
McConnell’s press conference has now been cut short twice in the last four weeks due to freezing up, with the first occurrence taking place on July 26 at a regular news conference. After being questioned, he froze up and was silent for around thirty seconds before being led away.
Before returning to the podium and saying, “I’m fine,” he was led back to his office for a while. Later, he disclosed that the president had contacted him about the event, and McConnell made fun of being “sandbagged” at the podium in allusion to the vice president’s remark after falling.
Although Mitch McConnell has always prided himself on being “stronger than mule piss,” it is evident that he is aging, and both Republicans and Democrats are keeping an eye on this as his mishaps continue. In addition to his two frozen moments, he has also experienced two falls in the last five months.
In March, a spokeswoman said, “Leader McConnell tripped at a dinner event Wednesday evening and has been admitted to the hospital and is being treated for a concussion.” He allegedly fractured a rib and sustained a concussion as a result of the fall at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Washington, D.C.
The second fall, which at the time went unreported, occurred in July as the person was getting off an aircraft at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. He reportedly fell and hit his face, so it was deemed “prudent and precautionary” to wheel him around the airport in a wheelchair.
Mitch McConnell, 81, is one of the elder senators now serving in the Senate, but he’s not the only one; former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is 83 years old, and California’s Dianne Feinstein is 90 years old. It is concerning that members of Congress are currently 59 years old on average.