Former Oregon Senator Mark Hatfield has been hospitalized in Maryland. April Baer reports the 88-year-old statesman has been frail in recent years.
A source close to the Hatfield family confirmed the former senator was moved east for observation at a National Institutes of Health facility in Bethesda.
He has relatives in the area, and has been in Maryland about three weeks.
Hatfield followed two terms as Oregon governor with a long and successful career in the U.S. Senate. During his time there, he channeled public service projects to Oregon, and became known for an independent-minded approach to party politics.
He’s staying in an NIH hospital wing that’s named after him. During his tenure as Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Hatfield was a good friend to medical researchers, increasing funding for the NIH, and re-structuring research spending.
Hatfield has seldom been seen in public in recent years. He moved from Oregon to California two years ago.