PHOENIX—Former Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer was primed and ready for a victory celebration with Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump as election results rolled in.
Then she collapsed and was rushed to a New York hospital Tuesday night. And she missed the Wednesday morning speech where Trump addressed the nation for the first time as president-elect.
The early and fervent Trump supporter told The Associated Press she had been battling pneumonia since last month and had been feeling better after a course of antibiotics.
But the illness came back with a vengeance when she arrived in New York. She said she was at the victory party when she started feeling sick and collapsed, hurting her leg and shoulder.
She spent the night in a hospital and missed the speech where she had expected to be on stage with Trump, instead being tended to by doctors and nurses in an emergency room. She flew home Wednesday even through doctors wanted to keep her in the hospital until Friday.
“They wanted to keep me in the hospital, but I can’t do that,” she said. “I can’t waste all this time sitting in a bed.”
A Republican who left office in January 2015, Brewer backed Trump since soon after he launched his campaign in mid-2015. Known as a proponent of stronger border security, Brewer said she will be a policy adviser on Trump’s transition team.
She also said she believes the border wall he promised during his campaign will be built. What happens to people already in the country without legal authorization, however, remains an open question.
“My message is that we need our border secured and then we all need to come to the table and decide just exactly how we’re going to handle this issue,” Brewer said. “But people want our border secured. They want our border secure. All this illegal immigration is just out of control, totally.
“That is what I’ll suggest to him and I think that the wall will be built, I do believe the wall will be built,” she said. “I don’t think he’s changed.”