Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) had surgery on Tuesday to insert a stent in his heart after experiencing chest pains, his office announced.
“A CT scan showed partial blockage of an artery that was the likely cause of the symptoms,” Lieu’s chief of staff, Marc Cevasco, said in a Twitter statement on Wednesday. “Yesterday, he underwent stent surgery. It was successful.”
Cevasco said Lieu was recovering at a hospital in Washington, D.C., and would likely be released later on Wednesday. The congressman was expected to miss work in Congress for the rest of the week. The Associated Press noted that stent surgery is a common procedure in which a tube is used to prop open an artery that has been partially blocked.
Lieu is a prominent member of the House Judiciary Committee, which this week unveiled two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump: one for abuse of power and another for obstruction of Congress. The panel began markups on Wednesday and is expected to vote to recommend the articles to the full chamber later this week.
Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) noted in his remarks on Wednesday that Lieu was absent for the markup, but said the lawmaker was in “good spirits” following surgery.
Throughout the impeachment investigation, Lieu has been a vocal critic of the president. When House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) announced the opening of the inquiry into Trump’s July 25 call with the leader of Ukraine, Lieu said Congress had a “duty” to examine the president’s behavior despite the “huge institutional and political implications for our country.”
“His actions have pushed us to an inflection point,” Lieu said at the time. “By stonewalling, Trump is telling Americans that he doesn’t have to answer to them. As representatives of the American people, it’s our job to stand up for what’s right. That’s why I believe impeachment proceedings are warranted and necessary.”