Just a week before his bid for re-election and only days after appearing at an Austin church, Cook County Board President John Stroger suffered a stroke early Tuesday.

Stroger, 76, will likely spend the final days of the campaign in a hospital bed, unable to walk, slightly disoriented and unable to speak, according to news accounts. Stroger was in the midst of a tough re-election campaign with fellow Democrat and board commissioner Forrest Claypool vying for his seat. Recent polls showed Stroger leading Claypool. Democratic Party leaders are weighing its options if Stroger wins but is unable to serve.

Stroger was a guest at Greater St. John Baptist Church Sunday, just days before suffering his stroke. He was joined by 8th District State Rep. Calvin Giles and other elected officials. Stroger will remain at Rush University Medical Center at least until next Tuesday’s March Primary.

?”Terry Dean