Kennedy 'Conscious, Talking' in Hospital

Senator, 76, airlifted to Boston hospital after falling ill
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 17, 2008 4:25 PM CDT
Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., left, stands with Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., during a rally for Obama at American University on Jan. 28, 2008, in Washington.    (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
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(Newser) – Ted Kennedy is "conscious, talking, joking with family" after having a seizure at the family compound in Hyannisport this morning, the AP reports. The 76-year-old senator spent 2 hours in a Cape Cod emergency room before being flown to Massachusetts General in Boston, the Cape Cod Times reports. He likely did not have a stroke but will not know details for another 48 hours, the spokeswoman said.

Family members told CNN they were "guardedly optimistic" that the longtime senator—one of only six to serve more than 40 years—would recover fully. Sen. John Kerry arrived at the hospital but declined comment. Kennedy had surgery in October to repair a blocked artery in his neck, a common procedure used to ward off strokes.