The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Sen. Cramer says he may need part of finger amputated

Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) suffered an injury last weekend. (Amanda Andrade-Rhodes for The Washington Post)
Placeholder while article actions load

Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) said Wednesday that he may need to have part of a finger amputated after suffering an injury to his right hand over the weekend.

In a statement, Cramer said he was doing yard work when the injury occurred and noted that it required immediate surgery.

“I continue to remain in North Dakota close to medical care as there is high risk of infection and the possible need for amputation,” Cramer said in a statement Wednesday morning.

Cramer added he was “alert and in good spirits” and monitoring Senate business closely, but he acknowledged that he would miss votes and hearings all this week, including a vote Tuesday night on a bipartisan gun bill that passed the Senate.

Liberal groups devote millions to blocking GOP election deniers

“I plan to return to Washington, D.C. after the Independence Day state work period and expect to be doling out a lot of left-handed fist bumps,” Cramer said.

There was initial confusion over the extent of Cramer’s injury. His original statement did not include the word “finger,” leading some to assume his entire right hand might need to be amputated. Cramer’s spokeswoman then clarified that “the risk of amputation is for his fingers,” to which Cramer replied, “Part of one little finger.”

According to the Forum, a North Dakota newspaper, Cramer was about to go swimming with his grandchildren on a rocky beach adjacent to his home and tried to move a large rock because it looked unstable to him. The rock rolled onto his hand, ripping off the tip of his pinkie finger and crushing his ring finger, he said.

“Right when I looked at it I knew it was severe,” Cramer told the Forum. “It was pretty nasty.”

Cramer told the newspaper a surgeon reattached the tip of the pinkie but that it may need to be amputated if it gets infected.