The nation is still reeling from a shocking debate between Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman and Dr. Mehmet Oz on Tuesday, Oct. 25. The two are in a tight battle for a US Senate seat that is a must-hold for the Republicans and ultimately could determine the balance of power in Congress. In the days leading up to the event, the Fetterman campaign tried to pass off its candidate as someone merely suffering from an auditory processing issue. However, it became evident in the first few seconds of the televised debate that this characterization was disingenuous at best and an outright lie at worst. It was clear to anyone watching that the Democrat was suffering from neurological issues – not uncommon for someone who has recently experienced a stroke.
John Fetterman – Serious Medical Issues
Implying the Democratic senatorial candidate’s primary health concern is an auditory processing problem is akin to saying a completely blind person is having a little trouble making out the color of trees. That realization became obvious when the 53-year-old greeted the audience with the salutation “Good Night” instead of “Good Evening.” It went rapidly downhill from there.
Fetterman’s speech was halting, his words were often inappropriate, his syntax was way off, and his responses were sometimes unintelligible. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to understand that the Pennsylvania politician is dealing with neurological deficits that are not unusual for a stroke victim.
Two main types of strokes – ischemic and hemorrhagic – affect the brain. Ischemic strokes result from a lack of blood flow, while hemorrhagic ones cause a brain bleed. “Both types can lead to death to some of the nearby brain tissue,” according to the website Verywellhealth. There is yet another type of stroke called thrombotic, in which a clot forms and ultimately blocks off the blood supply to a part of the brain.
The key word here is brain – a stroke can affect different parts, and the section affected tells the doctor what symptoms the patient is likely to experience. There are three major parts of the brain: the cerebrum, the cerebellum, and the brainstem. If the stroke damages the cerebrum, speech, language, cognitive reasoning, judgment, and memory abilities are often impaired. There are many more effects of cerebrum damage, but these are the ones that Fetterman typically displayed during his hour on camera.
As the parent of two children who dealt with auditory processing disorders (APD), it became evident that something more serious was going on with Fetterman. While APD involves a difficulty understanding sounds, including speech, it typically manifests in a distinctive manner. The child or adult may struggle to pick up slight sound differences. For example, if someone says, “He looks like Robert,” a person with APD might hear, “He looks like a rabbit.” Similarly, “Pour me a drink,” could be misinterpreted as “More by the sink.” WebMD points out that the issue is not hearing loss but rather, “It means your brain doesn’t ‘hear’ sounds in the usual way.”
Even to the layman, Mr. Fetterman does not present as someone with merely APD. However, he communicates as a classic stroke victim who has to deal with neurological deficits, including one of the most common side effects of a stroke known as aphasia. “Aphasia is a language disorder that impairs the ability to communicate,” according to the American Stroke Association. The organization lists “difficulty getting the words out, trouble finding words, and difficulty understanding what others are saying” as three of the most common symptoms of aphasia.
And it gets a bit more complicated because there are three types of aphasia: global, Broca’s, and Wernicke’s aphasia. Global is the most severe; Broca’s is a “halting” type of speech and might be what ails the Keystone State candidate. Wernicke’s is where people “string together meaningless words that only sound like a sentence,” say stroke specialists.
An Educated Guess
This is only an educated guess because the Fetterman campaign has not released any medical information of significance that would help the public better understand what is going on with its candidate.
No one wants to dig into someone else’s health issues. Most Americans believe these are private matters, and they are correct. But when someone is in such a high-profile position as running for the US Senate, the public is right to be concerned. The people must ask reasonable questions as to whether the candidate is up to the rigors of the position and whether they are capable of fulfilling a sworn duty. It is not a matter of singling out someone with a disability. One longtime Liberty Nation reader commented after watching the debate: “I have nothing against someone who is blind. I just don’t want them driving my car.”
Some members of the left-leaning press are trying to cover for the Democrat, but his impaired cognitive function is too obvious to conceal. The former mayor of Braddock, PA, was put in an untenable situation that could not be hidden from a live television audience. It was pitiful to watch. Thus far, close to 600,000 people have already voted in Pennsylvania, and they had a right to know before this that John Fetterman is not up to the job.
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