UPDATE: Joe Biden’s presidential campaign said that a third individual, a member of the aviation company that charters the former vice president’s aircraft, tested positive.
Campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon said in a statement, “Vice President Biden was not in close contact, as defined by the CDC, with this individual at any time. In fact, the Vice President did not even have passing contact: this individual was over 50 feet from VP Biden at all times, entered and exited the aircraft from a rear entrance, and both the individual and the Vice President wore masks for the entire flight. Given these facts, we have been advised by the Vice President’s doctor and the campaign’s medical advisors that there is no need for the Vice President to quarantine.”
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Earlier, O’Malley Dillon announced that Kamala Harris was canceling her travel schedule through Sunday after her communications director, Liz Allen, and a non-staff flight crew member tested positive.
O’Malley Dillon said that the third individual traveled on the plane during Biden’s trip to Ohio on Monday and Florida on Tuesday, and was stationed in the last row of the 737 aircraft. That was more than 50 feet away from the vice president, she said.
“No campaign staff members were in close contact with this individual,” she said. “The individual wore a mask throughout their time traveling with the Vice President and his accompanying party. The Vice President and his team wore N95 masks during the flights.”
PREVIOUSLY: Kamala Harris’ travel schedule has been canceled through Sunday “out of an abundance of caution” after Joe Biden’s presidential campaign said that two individuals tested positive for the coronavirus.
The individuals were Liz Allen, communications director for Harris, and an unidentified non-staff flight crew member, according to a statement from Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon. She said that they learned on the positive tests late on Wednesday.
“Senator Harris was not in close contact, as defined by the CDC, with any of these two individuals during the two days prior to their positive tests; as such, there is no requirement for quarantine,” she said.
O’Malley Dillon said that Harris will continue a schedule of virtual events and return to the campaign trail on Monday.
“Neither of these people have had contact with Vice President Biden, Senator Harris or any other staffers since testing positive or in the 48 hours prior to their positive test results,” she said. Biden will continue to travel, with plans to attend an ABC News town hall this evening in Philadelphia.
O’Malley Dillon said that Allen and the other individual had attended “personal, non-campaign events in the past week.
“Under our campaign’s strict health protocols, both individuals had to be tested before returning to their work with the campaign from these personal events,” she wrote.
O’Malley Dillon said that Allen and the flight crew member were on a trip with Harris on Oct. 8, and all three were wearing N95 masks. Harris has taken two PCR tests since then, including one on Wednesday, and tested negative, she said.
“She was not within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes with either of them,” O’Malley Dillon said. “As such, she does not meet the CDC definition of ‘close contact’ for exposure. In addition, both before and after the flight both individuals tested negative.”
The campaign also is canceling the travel on Thursday of Harris’ husband, Doug Emhoff. He has taken three PCR tests and has tested negative. He did not have exposure to Allen or the other individual, and will return to the campaign trail on Friday, the campaign said.
President Donald Trump has returned to the campaign trail after he was hospitalized for the coronavirus, and will attend an NBC News town hall in Miami on Thursday. A number of his top aides tested positive since an outbreak at the White House. They include his campaign manager, Bill Stepien, and Ronna McDaniel, the chairwoman of the Republican National Committee, as well as Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany and top aide Stephen Miller.
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