After a few days off following a pneumonia diagnosis, Hillary Clinton returned to the campaign trail Thursday and spun her recovery period into a pitch for sick leave and affordable health insurance.
Clinton referenced her brief illness at the top of her speech in Greensboro, North Carolina, acknowledging that it was difficult to take time off and that she initially tried to ignore her symptoms. She said she felt the time off from campaigning was actually good for her, though.
“I am not great at taking it easy even under ordinary circumstances, but with just two months to go until Election Day—sitting at home was pretty much the last place I wanted to be,” Clinton said. “But it turns out having a few days to myself was actually a gift…You know, the campaign trail doesn’t really encourage reflection, and it’s important to sit with your thoughts every now and then and that did help me reconnect with what this whole campaign is about.”
Clinton said she was thankful that she was financially able to take time off from work, something she emphasized many voters don’t have the luxury of doing.
“I want you to think with me for a minute about how I certainly feel lucky, when I’m under the weather, I can afford to take a few days off,” she said. “Millions of Americans can’t. They either go to work sick or they lose a paycheck, don’t they? Lots of Americans still don’t even have insurance, or they do, but it’s too expensive for them to actually use. So they toss back some Tylenol, they chug orange juice and hope that the cough or the virus goes away on its own.”
“That’s why I got into this race. I am running for everyone working hard to support their families,” she added later. “Everyone who’s been knocked down but gets back up.”