By Guy Page
Sen. Mark MacDonald plans to return home on Election Day, November 8 following his October 9 stroke, he said from his University of Vermont Medical Center (UVMMC) hospital room today.
The 79-year-old Orange County senator has been at UVMMC since the medical event.
MacDonald is undergoing rehab and “they tell me I’m doing well,” MacDonald told Vermont Daily Chronicle in a brief phone interview. He is scheduled to go home on November 8, Election Day, he said.
The farmer, Vietnam veteran, and retired educator served in the Vermont House of Representatives for one biennium, 1983-84. He was first elected to the Senate in 1996. His current two-year term ends on January 4, 2023. Unlike almost a third of his peers in the Senate, he is seeking re-election.
He faces stiff opposition from Republican John Klar, who has strong name recognition and has been campaigning hard. Also, Democratic supporters are concerned he may be more vulnerable to defeat in the past due to his Senate redistricting. He lost the solidly blue Thetford and gained more purplish Bradford.
MacDonald is known as a vigorous opponent of Vermont Yankee and an equally vigorous supporter of the climate agenda, once comparing the effort needed to reduce carbon emissions to the nation’s commitment to fighting World War II.
During Senate discussions this year on the Clean Heat Standard, he conceded that the CHS is a de facto carbon tax. When a senator wondered what to tell constituents concerned about the high price of heating fuel, MacDonald responded, “Get a blanket.”
According to the Ethan Allen Institute, MacDonald last session also voted twice to limit gun ownership rights.