Senate majority leader leaves hospital after exercise mishap

US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (above) suffered broken ribs and facial bones in an exercising accident at his Nevada home, his office said in a statement on Friday. -- PHOTO: AFP
US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (above) suffered broken ribs and facial bones in an exercising accident at his Nevada home, his office said in a statement on Friday. -- PHOTO: AFP

WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - Outgoing US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid broke ribs and facial bones when a piece of exercise equipment malfunctioned while he was working out at his home in Henderson, Nevada, his office said on Friday.

The 75-year-old Democrat, a former amateur boxer, was taken to a hospital in Henderson by his security detail for treatment after being injured on Thursday.

He was later transferred to the University Medical Center in nearby Las Vegas for further testing and was kept overnight as a precaution before being discharged on Friday.

Reid spokesman Kristen Orthman said the senator is “ready to get back to work”.

Ms Orthman said Mr Reid went home to Henderson after leaving the hospital and will return to Washington this weekend ahead of the Senate reconvening on Tuesday.

“A piece of equipment Senator Reid was using to exercise broke, causing him to fall and break a number of ribs and bones in his face,” an earlier statement from Mr Reid’s office said.

Ms Orthman told the Las Vegas Sun the senator was using a resistance band, an elastic band used for strength training, that snapped and hit him in the face.

Another aide, Mr Adam Jentleson, told the newspaper RMr eid broke bones near his right eye and several ribs when he fell.

Mr Jentleson said Mr Reid probably would have severe facial bruises.

Mr Reid was elected to the Senate in 1986 and became majority leader in 2007.

He will surrender that position to Senator Mitch McConnell in the new Congress as a result of November’s elections in which Republicans took control of the Senate from Mr Reid’s Democrats.

Ms Orthman said Mr Reid spent Friday with his wife and spoke with fellow senators in preparation for the Senate’s return.