Jan 24 (Reuters) - Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton, who collapsed while delivering his state-of-the-state address to legislators in St. Paul, announced on Tuesday that he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune newspaper reported.
Dayton, 69, told reporters at a press conference that his outlook was good and that he planned to finish his term as governor, which ends in 2018, the Star-Tribune said.
“People deserve a governor who is on the job, qualified to perform the job intellectually and physically, and I believe I am,” Dayton said, according to the newspaper.
A press deputy for Dayton could not immediately be reached for comment by Reuters on Tuesday.
A video clip from official statehouse footage posted on YouTube on Monday showed the silver-haired governor, who turns 70 on Thursday, slurring his words during his speech before slumping at the lectern.
Dayton appeared to hit his forehead on the lectern as he lost his footing and aides rushed to grab him. Gasps rose from the assembly hall and someone was heard saying, “Get him to the ground, get him to the ground, please.”
Lawmakers immediately adjourned the session while Dayton, a member of the Democratic-affiliated Minnesota Democratic Farmer-Labor Party, was attended to.
Dayton was briefly hospitalized about a year ago after fainting while speaking during an event in the St. Paul suburb of Woodbury. Aides said then that he was treated for dehydration before being released.
Dayton served six years at a U.S. senator from Minnesota before he was elected to his first term as governor in 2010. (Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by Alan Crosby)
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