Kitty Felde |

Putting in context speculation about John Bryson's possible earlier seizures

Various news reports have suggested that federal Commerce Secretary John Bryson suffered a seizure before his recent traffic collisions. Accounts of a rambling commencement address at Pasadena's Polytechnic High School's graduation over the weekend fuel that speculation.

It might be helpful to re-examine his earlier speeches.

First of all, John Bryson is not the most dynamic public speaker. Here he is making his first major speech, shortly after he was sworn in as Commerce Secretary. It's from December, before the US Chamber of Commerce:

Bryson is a deliberate speaker, making his points slowly, in a manner more wooden than animated. Here he is at Carnegie Mellon University in February:

But here he is a month earlier, at the Brookings Institution. He looks tired. He fumbles his words. A bad speech? Jet lag?

It's highly speculative to view this as a medical clue. Until — and if — the Commerce Department confirms a second seizure, it’s a good idea to take such speculation with a very large grain of salt.