Dayton Announces He Has Prostate Cancer

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton has prostate cancer, he said at mid-day, before heading to a Mayo Clinic appointment after fainting during his State of the State speech Monday night.

Dayton stunned reporters with the cancer announcement after unveiling his budget proposal for the next two years. He said that he does not think the cancer and fainting spell are related.

Mayo Clinic doctors diagnosed him with cancer on Friday. He said he planned to tell the public about it next week, after he learns how it could be treated. However, after Monday night’s fainting episode, his staff encouraged him to tell people today.

Prostate cancer is known as one of the least likely to be deadly, and in some cases it needs no treatment. But Dayton said that is awaiting his appointment next week to learn more.

The governor said that that John Kerry had prostate cancer, but as secretary of state he flew around the world, so he hopes it will not affect him.

Dayton’s health become the prime issue of his State of the State speech Monday night when he collapsed after talking 45 minutes, just before he was to talk about health care funding.

Today, he said that he did not recall hitting his head on the podium, but thought he was unconscious just a few seconds.

His Mayo Clinic doctor saw tweets about the fainting spell Monday night and called him, Dayton said. With medics still at his home, the doctor said it would be best for him to spend the night in his own bed and then go to an appointment today.

Before leaving for the clinic in Rochester, Minn., he announced a $45 billion two-year budget proposal.

Dayton said that his health issues should not affect his ability to serve out the final two years of his term.