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Former presidential candidate George McGovern hospitalized in Florida

By CNN Political Unit
updated 9:17 PM EDT, Wed April 4, 2012
George McGovern is being evaluated for
George McGovern is being evaluated for "brief transient spells" at a Florida hospital, his family said in a statement.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • McGovern was the Democratic presidential nominee in 1972
  • He ran against -- and lost to -- incumbent Republican Richard Nixon
  • A nursing supervisor at a Florida hospital says McGovern is in fair condition
  • His family says he is being evaluated for "brief transient spells" when he passes out

(CNN) -- Former Democratic presidential nominee George McGovern, 89, was admitted to a Florida hospital on Tuesday, CNN has confirmed.

The liberal icon is being evaluated for "brief transient spells where he passes out and becomes verbally unresponsive," his family said in a statement.

"He is comfortable and undergoing further testing," the family added.

Patty McAnnally, a nursing supervisor for Flagler Hospital in St. Augustine, Florida, told CNN that McGovern is in fair condition but said she could not release further information.

In December, McGovern was taken to a hospital in his native South Dakota after falling at a nearby university.

McGovern is best known for his unsuccessful 1972 campaign for president as the Democratic nominee against incumbent Republican Richard Nixon.

He represented South Dakota in the U.S. Senate and House before and after his presidential campaign, leaving the daily foray of politics after losing his 1980 bid for a fourth Senate term.

McGovern has remained active since, including an appointment by then-President Bill Clinton as an ambassador to the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization and a 2001 appointment as the U.N.'s first global ambassador for hunger.

CNN's Justin Lear contributed to this report.

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