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posted: 5/30/2013 8:40 AM

Images: Senator Mark Kirk at work in D.C. following his stroke.

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  • U.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat, center, speak with Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki after a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both Kirk and Johnson returned to the Senate after having strokes.

      U.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat, center, speak with Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki after a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both Kirk and Johnson returned to the Senate after having strokes.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, back at the Capitol for five months after a year at home in Illinois recovering from a stroke, heads from his Senate office to the upper chamber for a vote.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, back at the Capitol for five months after a year at home in Illinois recovering from a stroke, heads from his Senate office to the upper chamber for a vote.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk speaks with colleagues after a subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk speaks with colleagues after a subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at front right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat at left, speak with others after a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both senators returned to Congress after suffering strokes.

      U.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at front right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat at left, speak with others after a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both senators returned to Congress after suffering strokes.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk talks with an aide during a subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Kirk, back at the Capitol for five months after a year spent recovering from a stroke, speaks slower and softer, but clearly.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk talks with an aide during a subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Kirk, back at the Capitol for five months after a year spent recovering from a stroke, speaks slower and softer, but clearly.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk returns to his office after a day of voting and committee meetings in Washington, D.C.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk returns to his office after a day of voting and committee meetings in Washington, D.C.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • Republican U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, of Highland Park, heads to a vote via the Senate subway system at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C.

      Republican U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, of Highland Park, heads to a vote via the Senate subway system at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. senators Mark Kirk of HIghland Park, right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat, listen during a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both Kirk and Johnson returned to Congress after suffering stokes.

      U.S. senators Mark Kirk of HIghland Park, right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat, listen during a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both Kirk and Johnson returned to Congress after suffering stokes.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk talks with an aide during a subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk talks with an aide during a subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at front right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat at left, speak with others after a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both senators returned to Congress after suffering strokes.

      U.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at front right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat at left, speak with others after a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both senators returned to Congress after suffering strokes.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk returned to Congress in January. The Highland Park Republican suffered a stroke a year earlier.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk returned to Congress in January. The Highland Park Republican suffered a stroke a year earlier.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • Republican U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, of Highland Park, heads to a vote via the Senate subway system in the at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C.

      Republican U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, of Highland Park, heads to a vote via the Senate subway system in the at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk speaks with an aide during a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk speaks with an aide during a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk speaks with an aide during a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk speaks with an aide during a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at front right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat at left, speak with others after a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both Senators returned to Congress after suffering strokes.

      U.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at front right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat at left, speak with others after a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both Senators returned to Congress after suffering strokes.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at front right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat at left, attend a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both Senators returned to Congress after suffering strokes.

      U.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at front right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat at left, attend a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both Senators returned to Congress after suffering strokes.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk returns to his office after a day of voting and committee meetings in Washington, D.C.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk returns to his office after a day of voting and committee meetings in Washington, D.C.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • Joshua Roberts photoU.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat, center, speak with Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki after a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both Kirk and Johnson returned to the Senate after having strokes.

      Joshua Roberts photoU.S. senators Mark Kirk, a Highland Park Republican at right, and Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat, center, speak with Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki after a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Both Kirk and Johnson returned to the Senate after having strokes.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk speaks during a subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Kirk has been back at the Capitol for five months after a year at home in Illinois recovering from a stroke.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk speaks during a subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C. Kirk has been back at the Capitol for five months after a year at home in Illinois recovering from a stroke.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk speaks with an aide during a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk speaks with an aide during a Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Washington, D.C.
    Joshua Roberts photo

  • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk of Highland Park speaks during an meeting of the Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee, of which he is a ranking member.

      U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk of Highland Park speaks during an meeting of the Military Construction, Veteran Affairs, and Related Agencies Subcommittee, of which he is a ranking member.
    Joshua Roberts photo

 

Following a stroke in january 2012, mark kirk, junior senator from illinois, leads an existence on capitol hill far from the fast-paced first year after his 2010 election. his image has changed from a politician with a carefully polished exterior to one publicly embracing the debilitating stroke that changed many of the most basic aspects of everyday life.

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