Allen West, a tea party firebrand who is seeking the Republican nomination in the Texas gubernatorial race, is in the hospital after testing positive for the coronavirus.

West, a former Republican congressman from Florida, is unvaccinated. His diagnosis Saturday came days after he attended a crowded political fundraiser at a yacht club in Seabrook.

From his hospital bed, he issued a string of tweets attacking vaccine mandates and promoting controversial treatments, vowing that if elected, he would “vehemently crush anyone forcing vaccine mandates” in Texas.

“Our bodies are our last sanctuary of liberty and freedom, I will defend that for everyone,” he wrote.

West also said that he and his wife, Angela, who is vaccinated, had received treatment with monoclonal antibodies — a move that a number of people argued on social media was at odds with his remarks against vaccines that he said were “enriching the pockets of Big Pharma.”

Monoclonal antibodies are proteins created in the laboratory to mimic the human immune system. The Biden administration announced last month that it had reached an agreement to buy another 1.4 million doses of the only authorized antibodies from the pharmaceutical company Regeneron for $2.9 billion, or $2,100 per dose. The most expensive coronavirus vaccines are about $20 a shot.

The antivirals’ use has surged in recent weeks in states where the delta variant of the coronavirus has been skyrocketing, and in most cases where the states have lower-than-average vaccination rates.

West said his wife was released from the hospital after the monoclonal treatment. He was admitted overnight Saturday because of concerns over his oxygen saturation levels, hours after tweeting that he was suspending in-person events because he had pneumonia.

In a separate tweet, West, 60, said he had taken the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine and the anti-parasitic ivermectin, also a popular animal dewormer. Neither drug is approved for the treatment of covid-19. West didn’t respond to an emailed request for comment Sunday.

West, a conservative who once called for President Barack Obama’s impeachment, had a short stint in Congress for Florida from 2010 to 2012.

He later moved to Texas, where he has become a vocal opponent of coronavirus restrictions. In October 2020, he led a protest at the mansion of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) against now-expired mask mandates and shutdowns.

West announced in July that he would challenge Abbott, who is running for a third term in 2022 and has been endorsed by former president Donald Trump.

On Sunday, Abbott tweeted well wishes for West and his wife, saying, “You are in our prayers. Get well soon.”