Rep. Ted Poe (R-Texas) had a close call this past Thursday, choking on his food at the Capitol Hill Club in Washington before being saved by Republican House aide Nick Muzin.
National Review reported on the incident Monday:
Poe was not able to breathe, and [Rep. Matt] Salmon and the lobbyist called 9-1-1 and began to shout for a doctor. Several minutes had elapsed, and the situation was quite serious, witnesses said.
Muzin, coalitions director for the House Republican Conference and also a physician who keeps his medical license active and sometimes practices, rushed over to help. He delivered the Heimlich maneuver, which has to be administered at just the right position and in an upward thrursting [sic] manner, helping dislodge the food.
A spokeswoman for Poe did not immediately return a request for comment, but according to the National Review report, the congressman stayed to finish his meal and remained in good spirits.
The food-related medical emergency was reminiscent of then-President George W. Bush's encounter with a pretzel in 2002. Bush fainted while eating a pretzel at the White House and suffered bruising and scraping from his fall. The president was alone at the time but sought treatment from the White House medical office after regaining consciousness.