Sen. Dianne Feinstein briefly hospitalized after fall

Feinstein is out of the hospital, marking another health concern for the oldest member of the U.S. Senate.
Posted at 11:13 AM, Aug 09, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-09 11:13:03-04

Sen. Dianne Feinstein was briefly hospitalized on Tuesday after suffering a "minor fall" at her home, a spokesperson for Feinstein said. 

“Sen. Feinstein briefly went to the hospital yesterday afternoon as a precaution after a minor fall in her home. All of her scans were clear and she returned home," the spokesperson said. 

Her office expects Feinstein to be able to return to Washington from California in September after the Senate ends its August recess. 

Feinstein, who turned 90 earlier this summer, is the oldest active senator, three months older than Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley. 

Earlier this year, Feinstein announced she had shingles. She subsequently missed 95 sessions in a row from February through May before returning.

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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, center

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During that time, she missed critical votes on the Judiciary Committee, which caused many of President Joe Biden’s judicial nominees to remain in committee. 

Without her vote on the Judiciary Committee, some Democrats, like Rep. Ro Khanna, called on Feinstein to resign so Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer could replace her spot on the committee. Schumer attempted to temporarily replace her on the committee, but those efforts were blocked by Republicans.

Feinstein was briefly hospitalized on March 6, but spent much of her recovery at home. Her office said in May she was still experiencing temporary side effects, including vision and balance impairments. 

Feinstein gained attention again late last month after she had to be corrected by her staff during a Senate Appropriations Committee as she was reading from a document. 

One staff member whispered in her ear as she looked over, appearing to be puzzled. Then another staff member could be heard telling her to "just say aye." 

Her staff said the senator was "preoccupied" and didn't realize the debate portion of the hearing had just ended before she acted to give her vote. 

Feinstein announced earlier this year that she will not seek reelection in 2024.