Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick, a Democrat from Arizona, announced Wednesday that she is taking time off to seek treatment for “my alcohol dependence.” Kirkpatrick said in a statement that she suffered a “serious” fall last week and will undergo physical therapy.
She said that while she will “recover physically,” she needs to address another issue: alcoholism.
“I am finally seeking this help after struggling to do so in the past, and I am ready to admit that I, like countless other Americans, suffer from this disease,” she said in the statement.
“Hard work and determination — which have brought me success in life — have not been enough to win this battle. Other than being a wife, mother, and grandmother, the most important job in the world to me is representing my fellow Arizonans. I know I must get better in order to do my best in each of these roles.”
She said her offices in Washington and Arizona will remain open during her absence.
Kirkpatrick represents parts of Tucson and the southeastern suburbs. The GOP is trying to flip the district in 2020, with seven Republicans already having filed to run against her.
Representative Greg Stanton, a Democrat who represents Maricopa County, in the Phoenix area, tweeted out his support for his colleague.
“Ann Kirkpatrick is one of the finest public servants I know,” Stanton wrote. “She’s been a fighter her whole life, and I’m not surprised to see her make such a brave decision.”