Days after celebrating an upset primary-election victory against incumbent U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford, R-S.C., congressional candidate Katie Arrington was involved in a serious car collision Friday night and rushed to an area hospital.
According to The Hill, campaign consultant Michael Mule confirmed the Republican political newcomer was en route to Hilton Head at the time of the crash. She was set to receive an award from a South Carolina medical organization later that night.
The Charleston Post and Courier reported that Arrington suffered serious injuries, including a fractured back, when another driver crossed into the wrong lane and struck her vehicle.
The wrong-way driver was reportedly killed in the crash.
Multiple injuries required Arrington to undergo emergency surgery, from which she emerged awake and alert, according to campaign sources. She was scheduled for additional surgery on Saturday.
Surgeons are addressing a number of issues including a collapsed artery in her legs and injuries requiring them to remove her small intestine.
She was with her husband, Rob, at Medical University Hospital after she came out of surgery, Mule said.
Arrington is expected to require at least two weeks of hospitalization during a critical campaign period ahead of November’s elections. Her Democratic opponent, Joe Cunningham, offered his family’s prayers for her recovery and pledged to postpone all campaign activity “until further notice.”
We are suspending all campaign activities until further notice. https://t.co/yigZupPoLz
— Joe Cunningham (@JoeCunninghamSC) June 23, 2018
“Just hearing about the terrible accident that occurred overnight involving Katie Arrington,” Cunningham wrote. “Amanda and I are lifting her and her family up in prayer right now. Please join us.”
Arrington’s Twitter account referenced the crash, citing her faith and family as crucial to her ongoing recovery.
And it is from her strong faith, the support of her family, the prayers and support of our community, and the incredible doctors and staff at the hospital that she is certain she will be back to work for our state soon.
— Katie Arrington (@karringtonsc) June 23, 2018
The candidate’s staff asked for prayers not only for Arrington but for the survivors of the deceased driver involved.
Arrington defeated Sanford, the state’s former governor, in an unexpected victory many pundits said came on the strength of a last-minute Twitter endorsement from President Donald Trump.
Mark Sanford has been very unhelpful to me in my campaign to MAGA. He is MIA and nothing but trouble. He is better off in Argentina. I fully endorse Katie Arrington for Congress in SC, a state I love. She is tough on crime and will continue our fight to lower taxes. VOTE Katie!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 12, 2018
“Mark Sanford has been very unhelpful to me in my campaign to MAGA,” Trump wrote just before the primary election earlier this month. “He is MIA and nothing but trouble.”
After obliquely referencing Sanford’s 2009 sex scandal, he went on to offer his endorsement of Arrington.
“I fully endorse Katie Arrington for Congress in SC, a state I love,” Trump wrote. “She is tough on crime and will continue our fight to lower taxes. VOTE Katie!”
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