Pneumonia-hit Clinton faces debate deadline

Trump moves ahead in key battleground state of Florida, sends a barbed 'get well' message. With video.

Hillary Clinton's doctor says she is being treated for pneumonia and dehydration but is recovering well at home after collapsing as she left a 9/11 memorial event in New York earlier yesterday.

A video posted to social media (below) appears to show the Democrat presidential candidate's legs buckling just before Secret Service agents help her into a vehicle. 

Mrs Clinton (68) was taken to the Manhatten apartment of her daughter Chelsea, where she emerged 90 minutes later after arriving for a brief photo-op, looking recovered and telling reporters, "I feel great."

Nevertheless, the candidate has cancelled a two-day swing through California. Her doctor says she is on a course of antibiotics.

And US media has had videos of her collapsing (see an example below) on high-rotate. A new clip, with a slightly closer angle than the first, has set off a whole new feeding frenzy.

Rumours of extreme ailments were rife on Reddit (the home of quality comments, according to RNZ), stoked by a suggestive poll on Wikileaks (which the Julian Assange site later took down).

The Clinton campaign has been its own worst enemy in this regard with an overly secretive approach. It was revealed yesterday that her physician, Dr Lisa Bardack, first made a pneumonia diagnosis on Friday.

Debate deadline
A key question is whether Mrs Clinton will be match fit for her first debate against Donald Trump, scheduled for September 26, twelve days away.

According to WebMD, "In healthy people, pneumonia can be a mild illness that is hardly noticed and clears up in two to three weeks. In older adults and in people with other health problems, recovery may take six to eight weeks or longer."

There will be four debates in all (the others are scheduled for October 4, 8 and 19) ahead of the November 8 election.

With polls showing the race in a statistical dead-heat, the head-to-head clashes could be decisive.

Trump closing
Mr Trump (70) has recently closed on Mrs Clinton in polls, both nationwide and in key battlegrounds states where the gap between the two is now within the margin of error.

A more presidential style and an apparent softening on some of his more hardline policies seem to have paid off for the Republican over the past fortnight.

The latest polls released overnight puts him four points ahead in Florida, where he is also now a nose ahead in the latest poll-of-polls.

Clinton, Trump pledge to release more info
Both candidates have been criticised for releasing only limited information about their health.

Mrs Clinton has previously disclosed a concussion incident in 2012 that left her with double-vision and a blood clot in her head.

Mr Trump recently released a four-paragraph statement from his gastroenterologist, written last December, which states that if he wins office "Mr Trump .... will be the healthiest individual ever elected to the presidency."

Earlier today, NZT, Clinton's team promised to release more detailed medical records this week. Mr Trump (70) says he has just had a physical and will also disclose more details. If he wins on November 8, Mr Trump will become the oldest president ever elected.

Best wishes, Trump-style
Mr Trump took the high road when asked about Mrs Clinton's health on Fox News, saying "“I just hope she gets well and gets back on the trail and we’ll be seeing her at the debate."

However, he couldn't resist a dig as well, adding, "They say pneumonia — on Friday but she was coughing very, very badly, a week ago and even before that if you remember. It’s very interesting to see what’s going on.”

The Republican candidate was raising questions about why Mrs Clinton looked "sick" and "exhausted" before her collapse yesterday and his proxies, including Rudi Giuliani, stepped up that line of attack yesterday.

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