McCain says he's feeling well, vows to return in weeks

2017-12-19 09:28
Senator John McCain. (Rahmat Gul, AP, file)

Senator John McCain. (Rahmat Gul, AP, file)

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Washington - Republican Senator John McCain on Monday expressed thanks for the overwhelming support as he battles brain cancer, saying he is feeling well and looks forward to being back on the job in January.

The 81-year senator returned home to Arizona after being treated for a viral infection at Walter Reed Medical Center in Maryland. He had missed votes last week and will miss a crucial vote on the GOP tax bill this week.

McCain tweeted on Monday: "Thanks to everyone for your support & words of encouragement! I'm feeling well & looking forward to returning to work after the holidays."

His wife, Cindy, tweeted earlier on Monday: "Nothing beats the feeling of being home in Arizona for the Holidays!" with a photo of a Christmas tree.

A statement from his office late on Sunday said he would undergo physical therapy and rehabilitation at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona.

Razor-thin majority

Now in his sixth Senate term, McCain underwent surgery in mid-July to remove a 51mm blood clot in his brain and was diagnosed with glioblastoma.

McCain's daughter, Meghan, tweeted on Sunday: "My father is doing well and we are all looking forward to spending Christmas together in Arizona."

This week, the GOP will try to pass a sweeping $1.5 trillion tax package in the Senate with a razor-thin majority and all Democrats opposed to the legislation.

Republicans hold a slim 52-48 advantage in the Senate, and McCain and Senator Thad Cochran missed votes last week.

The 80-year-old Cochran had a non-melanoma lesion removed from his nose earlier this week. He cast a vote Monday night on a nomination and is expected to vote on the tax bill.

Republicans secured the support of Maine Senator Susan Collins on Monday, and they are poised to pass the bill by a narrow margin in the face of unified Democratic opposition.

As a backstop, Vice President Mike Pence would be available to break a tie.

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