Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., has been diagnosed with a brain tumor, his office said Wednesday, throwing into doubt when and if he will return to Washington to resume his duties in the Senate.
The Mayo Clinic Hospital in Phoenix said tests revealed “a primary brain tumor known as a glioblastoma” associated with a blood clot above his left eye that was removed last week.
“The Senator and his family are reviewing further treatment options with his Mayo Clinic care team,” said the hospital in a statement. “Treatment options may include a combination of chemotherapy and radiation.”
McCain, 80, was treated for the blood clot last week. His office announced last Saturday that he would be away from the Senate all of this week.
“The Senator’s doctors say he is recovering from his surgery ‘amazingly well’ and his underlying health is excellent,” the hospital said in its statement.
Colleagues from both parties swiftly reacted to McCain’s announcement Wednesday evening with sadness and encouragement.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., issued the following statement: “John McCain is a hero to our Conference and a hero to our country. He has never shied from a fight and I know that he will face this challenge with the same extraordinary courage that has characterized his life. The entire Senate family’s prayers are with John, Cindy and his family, his staff, and the people of Arizona he represents so well.
“We all look forward to seeing this American hero again soon.”
McCain, a prisoner of war in Vietnam and a two-time presidential candidate, is known for his unfiltered opinions and willingness to buck Republican party orthodoxy. Along with Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., perhaps his closest friend in the Senate, McCain has become one of the leading Republican critics of President Donald Trump, particularly on issues of foreign policy and national security.
In a written statement she posted on Twitter, McCain’s daughter, Meghan McCain, said the news of her father’s illness has “affected every one of us in the McCain family.” She said they live with “anxiety about what comes next,” which they have endured before. McCain has a history of melanoma, a dangerous form of skin cancer.
She added, “it won’t surprise you to learn that in all this, the one of us who is most confident and calm is my father. He is the toughest person I know. The cruelest enemy could not break him.”
(c) 2017, The Washington Post · Sean Sullivan