BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - When the U.S. Senate returns to Washington on Monday, Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran will not be there.
A statement from Cochran's chief of staff says the senator developed another urinary tract infection. The 79-year-old Mississippian had vowed to return to his office at the U.S. Capitol on Monday. Instead, he's remaining in Mississippi under doctors orders.
The statement from Chief of Staff Brad White says Cochran's decision to rest at home was made late Saturday night.
"He will continue his recuperation at home in Mississippi," White wrote. "The Senator has expressed his intention to return to the Senate when his health permits, and to fulfill his commitment and duties to the people of his state."
Mississippi's senior senator is the chair of the Senate Appropriations committee. The committee has a key role in keeping the government open as a December deadline approaches.
Media reports indicate Sen. Cochran missed the last two weeks of Senate's term before its October break because of health issues. During the break, his office said he would return Oct. 16. However, colleagues had fears Sen. Cochran's health issues would keep him away from the capitol indefinitely.
With Sen. Cochran at home, Senate Republicans say they face an uphill battle on important votes regarding tax reform and healthcare.