Argus Leader on Senator Johnson's Return
Hupke said many people pray for Johnson, following a biblical mandate to pray for government leaders, but they need to hear from the senator himself if positive reports on his health are to be trusted.Read it all here.
A gap in understanding rises from the optimism of Majority Leader Harry Reid, who said Thursday that Johnson has regained 90 percent of his speech and probably will return to the Senate by September. Neither detail is necessarily true, said Johnson's communications director, Julianne Fisher.
"Harry Reid is incredibly enthusiastic, very supportive, and we certainly appreciate that, but doctors have to come first, and doctors are saying 'no timeline,' " Fisher said.
Reid, who's from Nevada, gave a promising report on Johnson after the Dec. 13 hemorrhage and more than once predicted Johnson would be back in the Capitol this spring. It's possible Reid will be correct about a September return, though "sometimes his crystal ball has not been reliable," Fisher said.and...
"The uncertainty and anxiousness of waiting - that's when our fears can become very noisy, like the father waiting up at night for a call from his daughter," said Daniel Leininger, a therapist and counselor in Sioux Falls. "Without hearing anything, that just makes people more anxious."Others say leave him alone.
Bryan Carey, 22, a loss-prevention worker at Best Buy, said the silence has lasted long enough. "It's a big issue to be able to know what he's thinking," he said.
This article is kind of a turn of policy for the A.L., who I think has taken some heat on the issue of not asking such questions regarding when the Senator is going to return. Of course, the immediate opinion is that they wouldn't give any Republican a free pass.
Of course, there are people out there who are already crying foul at this kind of examination.
I think everyone is between a rock and a hard place on this issue. There are the partisan forces which will always be there to some degree simply over wanting to possess the seat for "their team." That's just the uber competitive nature of politics. That mindset is always lurking in the background.
Then there are the forces of just plain human concern for a family member, a friend, or a well-liked public figure. No one bears the Senator any ill will. We want him to get better, and to enjoy life. We all wish him well. Express a concern that it's taking too long? Well, that's just not South Dakota, where we care for the welfare of our family and friends.
Then there's a third force of wanting to ensure that one of the largest voices our state has in the Federal Government is heard. To citizens, staff members doing constituent service work isn't necessarily going to cut it. We need our voice.
The longer the Senator's recovery takes, the more these forces will battle back and forth. Some will be genuine and sincere. Some will be grossly partisan - and that's on both sides of the issue.
I think the main thing that needs to be considered is that the family sees all of this stuff. So, choose your words wisely. They're in a weird place on this as well. They're trying to allow someone very much in the public eye who was stricken with a brain injury to convalesce.