California Democrat announces cancer diagnosis

Rep. John Garamendi (D-Calif.) revealed Monday he has been diagnosed with blood cancer and started treatment for it.

Garamendi, 79, said in a statement he has early-stage multiple myeloma, which he described as a “treatable” form of blood cancer. He said he began chemo-immunotherapy Monday at Kaiser Oncology in Sacramento, Calif.

“With early detection, excellent doctors, and the love and support of Patti, our entire family, my extraordinary staff, and congressional colleagues, I know I’ll get through this while continuing to serve my constituents and advance American democracy,” he said in a statement.

“I’m grateful our President initiated the Cancer Moonshot and that California’s efforts in stem cell research and taxing cigarettes in the 1980s for cancer research have advanced therapies benefiting not only me, but every family dealing with cancer,” he said.

He said his treatments are expected to last a few months, and he will be limiting his travel to Washington, D.C., and public events to minimize his exposure to COVID-19, the flu and other viruses, noting that chemotherapy weakens the immune system.

“I am confident that the treatments will be effective, allowing me to continue serving impacted families and my constituents in Congress for years to come,” he said.

Garamendi has been in the House since 2009.

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