Rep. Steve Scalise announces cancer diagnosis, says multiple myeloma 'very treatable'

House Majority Leader Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., announced that he has been diagnosed with blood cancer.

The No. 2 House Republican said in a statement released Tuesday that he intends to be on Capitol Hill while he fights the illness.

"After a few days of not feeling like myself this past week, I had some blood work done. The results uncovered some irregularities and after undergoing additional tests, I was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, a very treatable blood cancer," Scalise said in a statement.

"I have now begun treatment, which will continue for the next several months," Scalise said. "I expect to work through this period and intend to return to Washington, continuing my work as Majority Leader and serving the people of Louisiana’s First Congressional District."

"I am incredibly grateful we were able to detect this early and that this cancer is treatable," he added. "I am thankful for my excellent medical team, and with the help of God, support of my family, friends, colleagues, and constituents, I will tackle this with the same strength and energy as I have tackled past challenges."

Scalise was hospitalized in June 2017 after a gunman opened fire as Republicans were practicing for that year's congressional baseball game. He was one of five people shot. The injury put Scalise in critical condition, and he did not return to the House floor until September of that year.


House lawmakers are due to return to Capitol Hill on Sept. 12 after a six-week August recess.

After Scalise's Tuesday announcement, well-wishes immediately began pouring in for the Louisiana Republican.

"My family and I are praying for Majority Leader [Scalise] and wish him a speedy recovery. He is no stranger to fighting and winning battles of all kinds. I’m confident that he will win this one, too," said Rep. Randy Feenstra, R-Iowa.

His colleague in congressional leadership, House GOP Conference Chair Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., said, "Steve is as tough and kind as they come, and he has beaten so many unbeatable odds."

"The Legend from Louisiana is beloved by his colleagues and America and we know he will fight this next battle with that same resolve. We are proud to stand by to support Steve and his family as they embrace strength and faith in this next challenge," Stefanik said.

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy issued a statement later on Tuesday afternoon saying he spoke with Scalise and that he was "in good spirits."

"Steve is a dear friend, and anyone who knows him knows he’s a faith-filled fighter who can overcome any obstacle that stands in his way. I spoke with him today and he's in good spirits, as nothing—not a gunshot and certainly not cancer—will stop him from accomplishing what he sets his mind to," McCarthy said.  House Republicans are proud to have the Legend from Louisiana as our Majority Leader. I wish him a speedy treatment as we continue to work together to get our country back on track and keep our Commitment to America."

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