Front-Runner Gets Pacemaker as He Awaits Results

John Fetterman, seeking Democratic Senate nomination in Pennsylvania, had a stroke days ago
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted May 17, 2022 7:20 PM CDT
Fetterman Gets Pacemaker on Primary Day
Gisele Barreto Fetterman, right, wife of Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, talks with reporters Tuesday outside her polling place after voting in Braddock.   (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

(Newser) – On the day Pennsylvania Democratic voters going to the polls to decide whether to nominate him for the US Senate, Lt. Gov. John Fetterman had an appointment elsewhere. The front-runner in the primary had a pacemaker with defibrillator installed, Politico reports, days after he suffered a stroke. Fetterman's campaign issued a statement beforehand saying the device "will help protect his heart and address the underlying cause of his stroke, atrial fibrillation (A-fib), by regulating his heart rate and rhythm." The procedure was successful, Fetterman's staff said later, and took about 2½ hours.

His campaign said all looks good for a full recovery, and Fetterman said there was no cognitive damage from the stroke. A poll earlier this month showed him leading US Rep. Conor Lamb in the Senate primary, 53%-15%, and the Hill reports the gap has widened since then. State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta also is in the running. It's an open seat; Republican Sen. Pat Toomey is retiring. The GOP primary includes Mehmet Oz, Kathy Barnette, and CEO David McCormick. (Read more John Fetterman stories.)

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