Kennedy Collapses During Inauguration Lunch
Posted on Jan 20, 2009
An ailing Ted Kennedy experienced seizures during a ceremonial luncheon on Capitol Hill and was removed from the private function, according to reports. President Obama accompanied Kennedy from the room and then returned to offer a few words of support. The luncheon then went ahead, though without Sen. Robert Byrd, who was too upset over his friend’s seizure to stay.
No word yet on Kennedy’s status. He suffers from a brain tumor that has caused seizures in the past.
Update 1: Sens. Orrin Hatch and Chris Dodd both said Kennedy was talking on his way to the ambulance. Dodd told ABC News: “He’s fine. ... He was talking all the way out to the ambulance. He’s just exhausted.”
Update 2: While doctors examine Sen. Kennedy, his son reports: “He’s awake. He’s talking. He is going to be fine.”
George Stephanopoulos / ABC News:
Kennedy was at a table with Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., Vice President Mondale and Mrs. Mondale, and others. While at the table, Kennedy began having seizures that lasted for several minutes. As they were carrying Kennedy out of the room, he was still seizing. President Barack Obama went out of the room with him, but he is back in the luncheon room now.
We are also told that Sen. Robert Byrd, D-W.Va., the oldest member of the Senate, was so upset and distraught from what he had witnessed, that he needed to be taken out. Byrd was conscious when he was taken from the room. The two have been friends for a very, very long time.