Gazette article described Merrifield's cancer recovery as "good news," his plan to return to legislature "feistier than ever" as "bad news"


A July 2 article by Ed Sealover in The Gazette of Colorado Springs editorialized as "bad news" for the Colorado General Assembly Rep. Mike Merrifield's (D-Manitou Springs) reported plan to "come back feistier than ever" to his legislative duties following successful cancer treatment. The article did not quote any sources describing Merrifield's return as "bad news." Also, having noted that radiation and chemotherapy treatment had "sapped [Merrifield's] voice and salivary glands," Sealover reported that Merrifield is "really eager to get back ... the froth in his mouth when he talks about" education issues.

From Ed Sealover's article "Cancer-free Merrifield set for full-time Capitol return" in the July 2 edition of The Gazette of Colorado Springs:

DENVER -- The good news for Colorado's General Assembly: Rep. Michael Merrifield is free of neck and throat cancer and ready to return to work full time next year.

The bad news: Merrifield, who was not known as a quiet, get-along guy even when he was literally without a voice this year, plans to come back feistier than ever.

Six months ago, the 60-year-old House Education Committee chairman discovered a lump on the right side of his neck that doctors diagnosed as cancer. He underwent five days a week of radiation and one day of chemotherapy treatment, which sapped his voice and salivary glands as he spent part of most days at the state Capitol.

Doctors declared him cancer-free in May, and Merrifield, an avid outdoorsman, is taking steps to return his life to normal. He bikes, though not two to five hours in the mountains daily as he used to, and he eats solids again, celebrating recently when he put down a seven-layer burrito.

What the third-term Colorado Springs Democrat is really eager to get back, though, is the froth in his mouth when he talks about the need to offer arts classes in public school or to keep charter and private schools from taking money from other schools.

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