Jimmy Carter: 'I have cancer'

The following statement from former President Jimmy Carter, who will turn 91 in October, was just released by the Carter Center in Atlanta:

"Recent liver surgery revealed that I have cancer that now is in other parts of my body. I will be rearranging my schedule as necessary so I can undergo treatment by physicians at Emory Healthcare. A more complete public statement will be made when facts are known, possibly next week."

Last week, the Carter Center had disclosed the the former president had undergone elective surgery to "remove a small mass in his liver." No further details were offered at the time.

There's plenty more here in our main story, that will be updated through the evening. A piece:

Jill Stuckey, a close friend of Jimmy and his wife Rosalynn, said residents have been “praying ever since we found out about the small mass on his liver.”

“He’s done everything right. He exercises, he eats right, that’s how he’s gotten to be 90 and (still) going to different continents,” said Stuckey, who helps manage the crowds of visitors at Maranatha Baptist Church when the former president gives lessons.

There’s a history of cancer in Carter’s family, she added, “but if anyone can beat it, it’s Jimmy Carter.”

The well wishes flowed in from across the political world. From his vacation in Martha's Vineyard, President Barack Obama called Carter and sent the following statement:

"Michelle and I send our best wishes to President Carter for a fast and full recovery. Our thoughts and prayers are with Rosalynn and the entire Carter family as they face this challenge with the same grace and determination that they have shown so many times before. Jimmy, you're as resilient as they come, and along with the rest of America, we are rooting for you."

Rep. John Lewis, D-Atlanta, who worked in the Carter administration, passed this along:

“I am very sorry to hear about the illness of President Jimmy Carter. He has been a very active, productive former president. We need his wisdom, his words, and his leadership now more than ever before. We need him to continue to speak out on the great issues of our time. I will keep him, his wife and his family in my prayers. He has my most hopeful wishes for a complete recovery.”

Several more pols weighed in on Twitter:

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About the Author

Jim Galloway
Jim Galloway
Jim Galloway is a three-decade veteran of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution who writes the Political Insider blog and column.