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Sen. Johnson Getting Back on His Feet
|Last Edited||Scott³ Dec 08, 2007 09:55am|
|Media||Newspaper - Washington Post|
|News Date||Saturday, December 8, 2007 03:00:00 PM UTC0:0|
|Description||Washington Post article. |
"The last thing Sen. Tim Johnson remembers about Dec. 13, 2006, is arriving at the hospital in an ambulance. After that, his memory begins to fade.
The South Dakota Democrat suffered a brain hemorrhage that day, setting off a furious round of speculation about whether the balance of Congress would shift. Senate Democrats had just won a one-vote majority in the November elections, and the senator's death could have passed control of the chamber back to Republicans.
But Johnson held on.
He survived life-threatening surgery that night, oblivious to the political speculation and the TV camera trucks surrounding George Washington University Hospital. He emerged from a medically induced coma a month later, and has fuzzy memories of the Super Bowl and the State of the Union address in the weeks that followed.
"I had dreams about being other places but I wasn't fully conscious," Johnson told The Associated Press in an interview in his Senate office. "It was strange when (my wife) Barbara and the family told me what a deal it had been."
A year later, Johnson, 60, is settling back into his Senate routine and preparing to run for re-election. His speech is slurred, but has improved noticeably since he first returned to work in September. His right side is weak and he uses a scooter to travel long distances in the Capitol. He can walk, though, and increasingly uses his cane to get around his office and his home."
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