McConnell, 81, was attending a private dinner at a local hotel when he tripped.

WASHINGTON is the leader of the Republican Party in the Senate Mitch McConnell was hospitalized after tripping at a local hotel Wednesday night, the senator’s spokesman said.

The 81-year-old senator from Kentucky was attending a private dinner in Washington when he tripped. He was hospitalized for treatment, spokesman Doug Andres said.

McConnell’s office did not provide further details about his condition or how long he might be out of the Senate.

In 2019, the leader of the Republican Party tripped and fell at his home in Kentucky, suffering a broken shoulder. At that time, he underwent surgery to repair a broken shoulder. The Senate had just begun its summer break, and he had been working from home for several weeks while he recovered.

First elected in 1984, McConnell in January became the longest serving head of the Senate when the new Congress convened, breaking the previous 16-year record.

The taciturn McConnell is often reluctant to discuss his personal life. But at the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, he spoke about his early childhood experience of poliomyelitis. He described how his mother insisted he stay off his feet when he was a toddler and worked with him through a specific physical therapy regimen. He acknowledged some difficulties in his old age when climbing stairs.

The Senate, whose average age is 65, has recently been without several members due to illness.

Sen. John Fetterman, R-Pennsylvania, 53, who suffered a stroke during his campaign last year, was expected to stay for several weeks how he got help for clinical depression. And Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., 90, said last week that she was hospitalized to be treated for shingles.

The lack of Democrats has proven to be a problem for Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., who already has a very narrow 51-49 majority.

Republicans, as the minority party, had an easier time with periodic absences. It’s unclear whether McConnell will withdraw Thursday or if that will affect the planned vote. South Dakota Senator John Thune is the No. 2 Republican in the Senate.

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