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Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton Collapses During State of the State Address

by Alex Johnson /  / Updated 
Image: Minnesota Lt. Governor Tina Smith, right, and Secretary of State Steve Simon, left, help Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton after he collapsed during his State of the State address in St. Paul, Minnesota on Jan. 23.
Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon and Lt. Gov Tina Smith help Gov. Mark Dayton after he collapsed during his State of the State address Monday in St. Paul.Glen Stubbe / AP

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Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton collapsed during his annual State of the State address Monday night in St. Paul, falling in a heap at the podium as legislators gasped and raced to help him.

Video of the speech aired by NBC station KARE of Minneapolis showed Dayton, 69, pausing for several seconds and reaching for a bottle of water. The governor then began slurring his speech before appearing to faint and falling to the floor.

The governor's office said in a statement Monday night that Dayton had simply fainted after having spoken while standing for more than 40 minutes. It said he quickly recovered and walked out of the Capitol under his own power.

IMAGE: Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton collapses
Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton collapses during his annual State of the State address Monday night in St. Paul.Scott Takushi / AP

Dayton underwent a routine medical check and was at home Monday night, according to the statement, which said the governor would resume his full schedule on Tuesday.

Eric Dayton, the governor's son, said on Twitter afterward that his father is "doing great."

KARE reported that Dayton also fainted at a campaign event last year. His staff blamed overheating and dehydration.

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