- Associated Press - Tuesday, October 26, 2010

SACRAMENTO, Calif. | Just a week before Election Day, California GOP Senate challenger Carly Fiorina was admitted to a hospital Tuesday to be treated for an infection associated with her reconstructive surgery after breast cancer.

The former Hewlett-Packard Co. chief executive is being treated with antibiotics, Deborah Bowker, the campaign’s chief of staff, said in a statement.

The hospitalization forced cancellation of campaign events Tuesday in Riverside and Coachella, keeping Mrs. Fiorina off the campaign trail during the crucial time a week before the election - and just as polls suggested she was starting to gain momentum in her race against three-term Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer.

“While this will impact her campaign schedule today, Carly is upbeat, and her doctors expect her to make a quick and full recovery and be back out on the campaign trail soon,” Ms. Bowker said in the statement.

The campaign did not say at which hospital Mrs. Fiorina was being treated. She had undergone surgery for her breast cancer at Stanford Hospital.

Mrs. Boxer’s campaign issued a statement wishing the Republican candidate well.

“We wish Carly Fiorina a speedy recovery and hope she is able to return to her normal schedule soon,” Boxer campaign manager Rose Kapolczynski said in a statement.

Mrs. Fiorina, 56, was diagnosed with breast cancer in February 2009 before she formally announced her run for Mrs. Boxer’s seat. She completed chemotherapy and radiation treatments a year ago and had reconstructive surgery in July after having a double mastectomy.

The campaign did not release any more information about her condition.

The first-time candidate has maintained a busy campaign schedule in the final weeks of the race, traveling throughout a state that is big enough to stretch from Maine to North Carolina. On Tuesday, she was scheduled to meet with small-business owners in the two Riverside County cities to discuss jobs and the economy before being hospitalized.

A University of Southern California-Los Angeles Times poll released Sunday showed Mrs. Boxer maintaining a narrow advantage, 47 percent to 41 percent, over Mrs. Fiorina in one of the fall’s most closely watched races. The gap was smaller than the same poll showed a month ago.