Mark Kirk, the freshman Republican senator from Illinois who won the special election for President Barack Obama’s former Senate seat in 2010, suffered a stroke on Monday morning and was admitted to a hospital in Chicago to undergo surgery, The Daily Caller has confirmed. Kirk’s Washington, D.C. office also confirmed to TheDC that the surgery was successful.
Kirk, who is 52 years old, “checked himself into Lake Forest Hospital, where doctors discovered a carotid artery dissection in the right side of his neck,” according to a statement released by his office.
“He was transferred to Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, where further tests revealed that he had suffered an ischemic stroke,” the statement continued. “Early [Monday] morning, the senator underwent surgery to relieve swelling around his brain stemming from the stroke. The surgery was successful.”
“Due to his young age, good health and the nature of the stroke, doctors are very confident in the senator’s recovery over the weeks ahead.”
Kirk was elected in 2010 to what was formerly President Barack Obama’s Senate seat. He replaced Sen. Roland Burris, who had been appointed to fill out Obama’s term by disgraced former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
Elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2000, Kirk is regarded as a moderate Republican. In 2010, the American Conservative Union scored him at 62.5 out of 100.