Handful Of Senators Self-Isolate After Rand Paul Tests Positive For COVID-19
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is the first senator to test positive for the coronavirus, though he was showing no symptoms. Some colleagues, following medical advice, also removed themselves from the Capitol, which means, as of now, they can't vote on the stimulus legislation. On the House side, Rep. Ben McAdams (D-Utah) was hospitalized with the disease.
The New York Times:
Rand Paul Tests Positive For Covid-19, Fueling Anxiety In The Capitol
Senate Republicans were struggling to salvage a more than $1 trillion economic rescue package to respond to the coronavirus crisis when they got the message on Sunday afternoon: One of their own had been walking around the Capitol with Covid-19 for days as they debated how best to confront the rapidly spreading pandemic. Senator Rand Paul had tested positive for the coronavirus, Senator Mitch McConnell, the majority leader, told fellow Republicans over lunch. It was the news that lawmakers had been dreading for weeks as they went about their travel- and handshake-heavy routines while the disease circulated around the country. (Fandos and Edmondson, 3/22)
The Associated Press:
Sen. Rand Paul Tests Positive For Virus, Forcing Quarantines
His announcement led Utah’s two GOP senators — Mike Lee and Mitt Romney — to place themselves into quarantine, stepping away from negotiations as the Senate worked on a $1.4 trillion economic rescue package for the coronavirus crisis. At least five senators, including Paul, were in self-quarantine Sunday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said. “The coronavirus has hit the Senate today,″ said McConnell, R-Ky. “It’s not just back in our states but right here in the Senate.″ (Daly, 3/23)
The Washington Post:
Rand Paul Becomes First Senator To Test Positive For Coronavirus
Other Republican senators appeared unnerved by the revelation that one of their own had tested positive — and several voiced uncertainty about how to proceed. “There’s no doubt, I’m sure, that there are members, our members, who have had contact with him,” Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) said of Paul. “That’s why I think we have to get this [relief package] done quickly.” (Sonmez, Kim and Kane, 3/22)
Rand Paul's Coronavirus Diagnosis Sends Shockwaves Through Senate
Republicans gathered for a closed-door caucus lunch when Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) broke the news: One of their own, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), had tested positive for the coronavirus. “Colleagues, as everyone now knows, the coronavirus has arrived in the Senate. There are at least five senators who are in self-quarantine at the moment,” McConnell said, making a public announcement from the Senate floor. The first known case of a senator contracting the disease set off a domino effect throughout the chamber as colleagues tried to recall the last time they were in close contact with Paul, who was in the Capitol complex as recently as Sunday. (Carney, 3/22)
Sinema Criticizes Paul For Alleged Behavior Ahead Of Coronavirus Test Results: 'Absolutely Irresponsible'
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) blasted reports that Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) attended the Senate gym and swam in the pool while awaiting his COVID-19 test results, which later came back positive. “I’ve never commented about a fellow Senator’s choices/actions. Never once. This, America, is absolutely irresponsible,” Sinema tweeted. “You cannot be near other people while waiting for coronavirus test results. It endangers others & likely increases the spread of the virus.” (Budryk, 3/22)
Utah Democrat Diagnosed With Coronavirus Hospitalized After Experiencing Shortness Of Breath
Rep. Ben McAdams (D-Utah), a freshman lawmaker who last week announced that he had been diagnosed with coronavirus, said Sunday that he was hospitalized after experiencing a shortness of breath. In a statement from his office Sunday evening, the Utah Democrat said that the incident occurred Friday and stated that he had to receive oxygen through a mask after struggling to maintain proper oxygen levels in his blood. (Bowden, 3/22)
Trump After Hearing Romney Is In Self-Quarantine: 'Gee, That's Too Bad'
President Trump said Sunday it's "too bad" that Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) is in isolation due to exposure to a fellow Senate Republican who tested positive for the coronavirus. "Romney's in isolation?" Trump said during the daily White House briefing after being asked about the senators in isolation. "Gee, that's too bad," the president added. (Klar, 3/22)