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Swine flu hits first member of Congress, a Republican

October 22, 2009 | 11:59 am


First anthrax, now this.

Swine flu has spread to Congress. Specifically, to Oregon Republican Greg Walden, a sixth-term congressman who tweeted Monday, "Just diagnosed with likely H1N1. Ugh. Off  to seclusion for awhile."

Walden is seen above during a congressional hearing in February into a deadly salmonella outbreak linked to a peanut factory. Walden wanted to know if the company's president, who repeatedly invoked his Fifth Amendment right not to testify, wanted to sample any of the tainted products removed from the nation's grocery shelves.

Ironically, Walden is co-chair of the congressional Rural Health Care Coalition, a bipartisan group of 182 members who lobby for healthcare in rural districts. Maybe the vaccine didn't get to rural areas yet?

-- Johanna Neuman

Photo Credit: J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press

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