(Reuters) — Conservative firebrand and Texas Republican gubernatorial candidate Allen West was receiving care for Covid-19 in a hospital on Sunday, he said on Twitter, noting that his experience with the illness had strengthened his opposition to vaccine mandates.

West, 60, served as chairman of the Republican Party of Texas for less than a year before stepping down in June. He has opposed vaccine mandates and is not vaccinated against Covid-19, according to his Twitter page.

A former one-term Florida congressman, he is now campaigning to unseat Republican Gov. Greg Abbott in 2022.

"I can attest that, after this experience, I am even more dedicated to fighting against vaccine mandates," West said on Sunday, in a series of tweets he sent while receiving care at a hospital in Plano, Texas.

West said he was receiving monoclonal antibody treatment and his condition was improving, although there were still "concerns of Covid-related pneumonia."

His wife Angela, who was hospitalized with the virus at the same time as he was on Saturday but who was vaccinated, has been released to go home, West said.

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