Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) froze again, this time during a press conference in Covington, Kentucky. This incident, reminiscent of a similar occurrence at the U.S. Capitol a month earlier, has raised eyebrows and prompted speculations about McConnell’s mental health and fitness for office.
During the event, McConnell’s reaction to a question about his potential reelection in 2026 was peculiar. He responded with a brief laugh followed by unintelligible mumbling. Witnesses from WLWT’s video account noted that McConnell’s gaze became distant, and his posture froze, while his eyes remained unblinking for an extended period.
Although initially unresponsive, McConnell eventually acknowledged the question, murmuring what seemed like an affirmative “Yes.” However, he remained silent for another 20 seconds before finally uttering, “Okay,” and redirecting his attention to another reporter.
In another video, shared by WLWT producer Shannon Thomas on X, McConnell appeared subdued as he addressed inquiries about the Kentucky Republican gubernatorial nominee Daniel Cameron. Yet, when confronted with a question about former President Trump, McConnell chose not to answer and instead left the podium with a slow and meek demeanor.
A spokesperson for McConnell provided a statement to Breitbart News, explaining that the leader had experienced a momentary lightheadedness during the press conference. The spokesperson confirmed that McConnell would consult a physician but assured that he was feeling well overall.
The incident’s contrast with McConnell’s demeanor just moments prior was pointed out by Punch Bowl News co-founder Jake Sherman. This recent freeze followed a perplexing occurrence where McConnell stood motionless for approximately 20 seconds during a press conference at the Capitol the previous month. Although he was briefly escorted to his office for assistance, McConnell returned to the podium and reassured everyone that he was “fine.”
Attempting to lighten the situation, McConnell joked about receiving a call from Joe Biden, who had checked on him after the incident. McConnell humorously stated, “I told him I got sandbagged.” The term “sandbagged” was a reference to Biden’s own stumble over a sandbag during the U.S. Air Force Academy commencement in June.
These incidents have fueled concerns about McConnell’s health and performance. Politico’s Jonathan Martin addressed this issue in a personal account, expressing his surprise at witnessing McConnell’s decline as someone who has covered him for years. Martin’s observations were consistent with discussions on Capitol Hill over the summer, where an apparent theme emerged regarding McConnell’s noticeable aging.