Kamala Harris will spend the weekend on lockdown after two staffers in her “orbit” tested positive for coronavirus, according to CNN.
The outlet reports that two staffers — “a flight crew member and Harris’ communications director, Liz Allen” — both tested positive for the virus yesterday, effectively forcing the Biden presidential campaign to cancel Harris’ appearances through Sunday, even though a campaign spokesperson says that neither staffer had close contact with either Harris or Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.
“After being with Senator Harris, both individuals 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,” the spokesperson told media Thursday morning.
The closest Harris came to either individual was a flight that took place following the vice presidential debate last week. “During the flight, Senator Harris wore an N95 mask, as did both individuals. She was not within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes with either of them.”
The campaign will limit Harris’s events for the weekend and have canceled appearances for her husband, as well (he will return to the campaign trail on Friday). She is still on the calendar for an event on Monday, though that is subject to change if she begins to show signs of the virus, per the Biden campaign.
“These protocols help protect the campaign, the staff, and anyone who they may have contact with; the importance of having such protocols — which include testing before resuming duties, regular testing while working in-person, isolation after time off, and masking and distancing while on campaign duties — have been illustrated once again,” she continued.
The campaign also noted that Harris has taken two PCR coronavirus tests since last week and both were negative. She will continue receiving tests throughout the weekend.
Biden has been limiting his campaign activity for weeks in an effort to avoid coming into contact with the novel coronavirus. Thursday night, he will participate in a “socially distanced” town hall event instead of a direct debate with President Donald Trump amid concerns that Trump is still contagious from his own bout with COVID-19. Trump will take part in his own town hall event, airing on NBC Thursday night, after being cleared by both the White House doctors and Dr. Anthony Fauci, one of the heads of the White House’s coronavirus task force.
Last week, Harris took additional precautions of her own in her debate with Vice President Mike Pence, out of concern that the vice president had been in contact with the president while the president was contagious. In addition to distanced podiums, the two debaters spoke from behind plexiglass dividers. Pence has never tested positive for COVID-19 despite his proximity to both Trump and key White House staffers who also had the virus.
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