White House Aide To Kamala Harris Tests Positive For Covid; Vice President Tests Negative
An aide who was in close contact with Vice President Kamala Harris has tested positive for Covid, according to a statement from the VP’s office late Wednesday.
The person “staffed the Vice President throughout the day Tuesday” received a positive test result on Wednesday. Harris has tested negative.
She and Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff are headed to Los Angeles today, where they will remain through the New Year.
President Biden also tested negative on Wednesday, according to USA Today, after he was in contact with a White House aide last week who later received a positive result.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki tested positive for Covid in October. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas announced that he had tested positive on October 19, forcing him to cancel a trip to Columbia. A White House official who traveled with President Biden to Glasgow, Scotland for the United Nations Climate Change Conference also tested positive for Covid-19.
Close contacts are on the rise throughout the U.S., with the Omicron variant now accounting for 73% of new cases and driving a surge across the nation, including in Los Angeles where the Vice President is headed. L.A. today announced that its daily case count had doubled in the past 24 hours.
See below for full statement.
It is in the public’s interest to know if any of the four principals (President, Vice President, First Lady, and Second Gentleman) are considered to have been in close contact with a White House official who subsequently tested positive for COVID-19 shortly after that contact. The criteria for what is considered a “close contact” with the principals is determined by the White House Medical Unit, in line with CDC guidance.
On Wednesday morning, a staff member who staffed the Vice President throughout the day Tuesday received a positive test result for COVID-19. Yesterday, Monday and every day last week, this staff member tested negative for COVID-19. This staff member is fully vaccinated and boosted and did not experience symptoms. Others who were in close contact with this staff member are being contacted and will be advised to get tested per CDC guidance.
The Vice President is tested on a regular basis. As a part of that regular testing, the Vice President received an antigen test this morning and tested negative.
Earlier today, after being notified of the staffer’s positive test, the Vice President received a PCR test and tested negative. She will be tested again on Friday then again on Monday per CDC guidance.
As CDC guidance does not require fully vaccinated people to quarantine after an exposure, the Vice President will continue with her daily schedule. This evening, she will depart Joint Base Andrews for Los Angeles where she and the Second Gentleman will remain through the New Year.