Six-term Iowa Governor Terry Branstad fell ill on Monday at an event in Johnston, Iowa, and was taken by ambulance conscious and alert to a Des Moines hospital, the governor’s office said.
Branstad, 68, told reporters after coughing at a weekly news conference early on Monday that he was suffering from a bad cold. He fell ill later at an event at DuPont Pioneer in Johnston, about 9 miles northwest of Des Moines.
“During the transport, paramedics took the governor’s vitals and initial tests indicate that the spell was caused by a seasonal illness,” spokesman Jimmy Centers said in a statement. “The governor had been suffering from the effects of a cold.”
Branstad, who had varicose vein surgery at the end of December, has a history of heart problems. Doctors inserted a stent after a heart attack in December 2000 and in 2010 inserted a second stent after routine tests found a partially blocked artery.
Branstad served four terms as Iowa’s governor from 1983 to 1999 and then returned to win election in 2010 and reelection in November.
(Reporting by Kay Henderson in Des Moines and David Bailey in Minneapolis; Editing by Susan Heavey and Sandra Maler)