Two Members Of Congress Test Positive For Coronavirus

U.S. Capitol Building
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Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL) and Rep. Ben McAdams (D-UT) said on Wednesday that they each tested positive for the coronavirus, making them the first members of Congress to contract the virus.

“I want everyone to know that I am feeling much better,” Diaz Balart said in a statement. ” However, it is important that everyone take this extremely seriously and follow CDC guidelines in order to avoid getting sick and mitigate the spread of this virus.  We must continue to work together to emerge stronger as a country during these trying times.”

Diaz-Balart said that after votes last Friday, he decided to self-quarantine in Washington and not return to his South Florida home because his wife Tia, has pre-existing conditions that put her at high risk. According to his office, he developed symptoms of the virus, including a fever and a headache, and was recently notified of his test results. He has been working from his Washington, D.C. apartment.

Shortly after his announcement, McAdams announced that he tested positive for the virus.

“On Saturday evening, after returning from Washington, D.C., I developed mild cold-like symptoms,” McAdams said in a statement. “In consultation with my doctor on Sunday, I immediately isolated myself in my home.  I have been conducting all meetings by telephone.  My symptoms got worse and I developed a fever, a dry cough and labored breathing and I remained self-quarantined.”

He said that on Tuesday, he got tested for the virus and learned that he tested positive on Wednesday.

“I’m doing my part as all Americans are doing to contain the spread of the virus and mitigate the coronavirus outbreak,” he said. “I urge Utahns to take this seriously and follow the health recommendations we’re getting from the CDC and other health experts so that we can recover from this public health threat.”

The Capitol physician said that his office “has taken appropriate actions to identify any individuals who require additional monitoring for periods of quarantine.”

A number of members of Congress have self-quarantined in recent weeks, particularly after an attendee at the recent Conservative Political Action Conference tested positive for the virus.

The Capitol has been closed to visitors, and members of the media have been advised to keep a distance from lawmakers as they conduct interviews. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) also extended voting time for a coronavirus relief package so members could enter and exit the chamber and not congregate.

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