Blast has learned that Senator Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) has collapsed during President Barack Obama’s celebratory luncheon.
CNN initially reported that either Senator Kennedy or Senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia collapsed, and they are reporting that Byrd may also have some kind of health situation.
Reports indicate that Kennedy suffered a seizure that “lasted quite a long time,” according to CNN. He was still apparently seizing when he was put until a wheelchair and brought out of the inaugural lunch.
President Obama confirmed that there was some kind of health emergency concerning Kennedy.
“Right now a part of me is with him,” Obama said during his lunchtime remarks. “My prayers are with him and his family.”
Paramedics were called in at about 2:30 p.m. EST.
Kennedy has been battling brain cancer since last spring.
Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) was with Senator Kennedy and said he had what “looked like a seizure.”
“It was painful to him, but as he was gradually able to come down he kind of look at me and smiled,” Hatch said. “He looked at me and gave that Irish grin.”
Hatch is one of Kennedy’s dearest friends, despite their ideological differences.
“We fight each other the time but … we’ve been able to do some remarkable things for the country,” Hatch said.
Blast will follow this story and bring you more as we learn more.