Former U.S. Sen. Rod Grams in hospice care

Former Sen. Rod Grams in 2006 (MPR News photo)

Former Republican U.S. Sen. Rod Grams is suffering from cancer and has entered home hospice care, according to his wife Chris.

News of Grams’ poor health was circulating this morning on Twitter. Chris Grams confirmed the basics of those messages to MPR News, but she declined to provide details. The Associated Press reported that Grams was diagnosed with cancer in April 2012.

Grams, 65, was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1994 and served one term. He lost his re-election bid in 2000 to Democrat Mark Dayton. He was a longtime television news anchor, also served one term in the U.S. House, representing Minnesota’s 6th District. He was recently named as a co-chair of Mike McFadden’s campaign for the U.S. Senate.

UPDATE

Kent Kaiser, a spokesman for the family, declined to identify the type of cancer. But he said Grams was diagnosed in April 2012.

“He’s gone through some rounds of chemo but at this time has decided to cease with that go to hospice care, which is at his home,” Kaiser said. “He’s still at home. He still gets around, and he’s upbeat. He’s doing well right now. In fact he still has people visiting him.”

UPDATE 2

Gov. Dayton had this response:

“I’m just very sorry. He was a dedicated public servant in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. We had a spirited campaign, but it was one where we developed a mutual respect. I wish him and his family all the best.”