McCaskill revealed today on her blog that she has been diagnosed with breast cancer. In her post, she says she found out about the cancer from a regular mammogram, one of the many services, by the way, that are offered via referral* at Planned Parenthood, for whom she's been advocating for some time.
She says she'll be receiving treatment for the next three weeks, but she'll still be keeping up with work because, I assume, she's an indefatigable badass:
During this time my staff will continue to assist Missourians and I will be posting on my Senate website (McCaskill.senate.gov) how I would have voted on any matters that come before the Senate during my absence—which I’ll also enter into the Congressional record. Additionally, I’ll be submitting questions in writing for any missed Senate hearings.
McCaskill is first woman ever elected to the senate from Missouri, the first woman ever to give birth as an active member of the Missouri state legislature, and one of the smartest liberal rhetoricians out there.
McCaskill is a powerful liberal politician partly because she knows exactly how to wrap liberal ideas in conservative-sounding rhetoric. She quotes Corinthians when she defends gay marriage. She invokes her history of "growing up with guns" when she supports common sense gun control, and this in an open carry state. Remember Todd "Legitimate Rape" Akin? She crushed him cleverly, then she shotgunned a beer with her daughters in a hotel room in Kansas City. If you're a political leader in a purplish state like Missouri, that's exactly the kind of stuff you have to say and do to get independents on your side.
Along with Barack Obama, McCaskill was one of the first politicians who felt like a real human being to me. In 2008 she gave the commencement speech for my graduating class as the University of Missouri, our shared alma mater. During the part of the speech where she was supposed to talk about how college prepares you not only for success in life but also for failure, she recalled her first real big political loss in her life: The Missouri gubernatorial race of 2004. She said the loss devastated her, and that she spent the two weeks thereafter baking chocolate chip cookies and drinking red wine. Again with the rhetoric. That combo—baking cookies and drinking red wine—somehow totally worked on me. If she had only mentioned the cookies, I wouldn't have bought it. If she had only mentioned the red wine, I would have been concerned. But that combination of images was perfect for a young, midwestern liberal like myself, who grew up on a steady diet of traditional images of domestic bliss and bacchanalian indulgences.
Hope she can win this fight against cancer.This post originally implied that Planned Parenthood facilities offer mammograms. They don't. They do, however, offer breast cancer screenings, and will refer any of the millions of women who rely on the them for healthcare to facilities that do offer mammograms, should need arise.