New Mexico Senator Suffers Stroke

Highlights the fragility of a narrow Senate majority

Senator Ben Ray Lujan, 49, a Democrat from New Mexico, suffered a stroke last week and is recuperating at a New Mexico hospital, resting comfortably.

Lujan was experiencing dizziness and fatigue before he checked himself into a hospital in Santa Fe before being transferred to the University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque.

“Senator Luján was found to have suffered a stroke in the cerebellum, affecting his balance,” said Lujan’s chief of staff. Lujan underwent decompressive surgery to relieve swelling and is recuperating. He is expected to have a full recovery.

Lujan’s absence leaves the Democrats at 49 seats in the Senate until his return.

There are currently two Republican senators out while quarantining for Covid-19, Mitt Romney and John Hoeven (ND).

“It’s just a reminder that in a 50-50 Senate any unexpected development could be a challenge to our moving forward on an agenda that the Democratic caucus shares,” said Chris Coons (Del, D).

Democrats on the Commerce Committee, where Lujan is a member, pulled three expected nominations that were scheduled for Wednesday for votes.

Majority Leader Schumer currently has 20 nominees up for votes through next week. Democrats can confirm Biden’s nominees with the current balance until all GOP senators are present.

Lujan’s staff did not say when the senator is expected to be back.

The Hill, New York Times