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Marjorie Taylor Greene says Mitch McConnell is 'not fit for office' after he appeared to freeze up for the second time

McConnell appeared to freeze Wednesday during a gaggle with reporters in Kentucky, pausing for more than 30 seconds after he was asked whether he would run for re-election.
Mitch McConnell during the Senate Republican’s policy luncheon press conference at the U.S. Capitol
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell appeared to freeze Wednesday while speaking to reporters in Kentucky. Rod Lamkey / Sipa USA via Reuters file

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene. R-Ga., said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is “not fit for office” after he appeared to freeze up for a second time in recent weeks when speaking to reporters.

“Severe aging health issues and/or mental health incompetence in our nation’s leaders MUST be addressed,” she wrote Wednesday in a post on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.

“Biden, McConnell, Feinstein, and Fetterman are examples of people who are not fit for office and it’s time to be serious about it,” Greene added, referring to health-related conditions Democratic Sens. Dianne Feinstein of California and John Fetterman of Pennsylvania have dealt with in recent months. President Joe Biden's verbal stumbles, meanwhile, have raised concerns especially among conservatives, who have questioned his cognitive ability.

Greene also suggested the possibility of invoking the 25th Amendment, which deals with presidential succession and disability.

“These politician’s staff and family members should be ashamed of themselves by enabling and allowing their loved ones to remain in office all to hold power. We are talking about our country’s national security and it’s all at stake! 25th amendment and other measures need to be on the table,” she wrote. 

In addition to Greene, another far-right lawmaker, Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., reacted to McConnell’s latest apparent freeze-up with a one-word post to X: “Yikes.”

McConnell's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

McConnell, R-Ky., previously voiced his rebuke of Greene over her incendiary comments. In 2021, he slammed Greene’s “loony lies and conspiracy theories” as a “cancer” for the party and the country. 

He also criticized Greene after she spoke at an event last year that was organized by a white nationalist who praised Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. He did not issue public comments at the time, but said in a statement from his office: “There’s no place in the Republican Party for white supremacists or anti-Semitism.”

McConnell appeared to freeze Wednesday during a gaggle with reporters in Covington, Kentucky, pausing for more than 30 seconds after he was asked whether he would run for re-election.

An aide approached him and asked, “Did you hear the question, senator?” McConnell continued to be unresponsive. Upon re-engaging, he responded briefly to another question about Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron, a Republican; his aide needed to repeat the question to him.

McConnell left after he was asked about former President Donald Trump, another question that had to be repeated. He brushed it off as he usually does with Trump-related topics.

Following the incident, a spokesperson said, “Leader McConnell felt momentarily lightheaded and paused during his press conference today,” adding that he “feels fine” but will consult a doctor before his next event as “a prudential measure.”

He also appeared to freeze during a news conference on Capitol Hill last month, going silent for 19 seconds before he was escorted away from the cameras. McConnell, 81, returned shortly afterward and continued his news conference, telling reporters, “I’m fine.”

McConnell's first apparent freeze-up last month came after he tripped and fell at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport weeks before, as first reported by NBC News. He was not seriously injured in the incident. But after an earlier fall in March at an event at a hotel in Washington, D.C., the senator was treated for a concussion.

McConnell’s latest incident has drawn concerns from some Democrats as well.

Rep. Dean Phillips, D-Minn., a member of the Democratic leadership team who is mulling a potential long shot primary challenge against Biden in 2024, also called for term limits after McConnell appeared to freeze up again.

“For goodness sake, the family, friends, and staff of Senators Feinstein and McConnell are doing them and our country a tremendous disservice,” he wrote in a post on X. “It’s time for term limits for Congress and the Supreme Court, and some basic human decency.”