A person has tested positive for coronavirus after attending a conservative conference where White House officials were present
An attendee of the annual Conservative Political Action Conference last month has tested positive for the novel coronavirus, conference organizers announced Saturday. A number of White House officials attended the conference, as did some 19,000 other people. President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence both spoke at CPAC, but the conference organizers said the attendee had no interaction with either of them.
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A person who attended the Conservative Political Action Conference last month tested positive for the novel coronavirus, conference organizers announced Saturday. Some 19,000 people attend the yearly gathering, and this year's line-up of speakers included President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, and a number of other top cabinet members and White House officials. The American Conservative Union, which organized the conference from February 26 to 29, said in a statement on Saturday the attendee did not have any interaction with Trump or Pence, nor did the person attend events in the main hall. The Washington Post reported that ACU's chairman, Matt Schlapp, interacted with the infected person at CPAC. Though it's unclear when the interaction occurred, The Post noted that Schlapp shook Trump's hand on stage on the final day of the conference. The infected attendee was exposed to the coronavirus before attending the conference, and was later diagnosed at a New Jersey hospital. The person is now under quarantine, ACU said. The organizers said the Trump administration was "aware of the situation," and urged attendees not to panic. "Our children, spouses, extended family, and friends attended CPAC," ACU said. "During this time, we need to remain calm, listen to health care professionals, and support each other."
Important Health Notification for CPAC 2020 participants and attendees. pic.twitter.com/NtahNO8st3 — ACU (@ACUConservative) March 7, 2020
The conference frequently draws thousands of conservatives from across the country, including politicians, conservative icons, and media figures. Several CPAC attendees spoke with Business Insider at the conference about their perception of the coronavirus threat, saying they believed mainstream news organizations were exaggerating the threat and that Trump had the situation under control. Trump has faced backlash in recent weeks over his administration's response to the coronavirus outbreak. So far, 19 people have died and 401 people have tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. Besides a nationwide testing shortage that has likely underestimated the true amount of cases in the US, Trump himself has been accused of frequently downplaying the risk the virus poses to the population.
Read more: The US government has completed fewer than 6,000 coronavirus tests as more states report new cases and deaths California, Washington, and New York have declared states of emergency to fight coronavirus — here's what it means The number of coronavirus cases outside China could jump tenfold every 19 days without 'strong intervention,' a study says A medical expert is going viral for a passionate post warning that mass panic about the coronavirus could do more damage than the disease itself Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: A law professor weighs in on how Trump could beat impeachment
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Fauci says he'll begin a 'modified quarantine' after having 'low risk' contact with a White House staffer who tested positive for COVID-19
White House coronavirus task force member Anthony Fauci told CNN he'll begin a "modified quarantine." Fauci...White House coronavirus task force member Anthony Fauci told CNN he'll begin a "modified quarantine." Fauci said he came into "low risk" contact with a White House staffer who tested positive for COVID-19. He said he will work from home and wear a face mask for 14 days, but may also go work in his office at the National Institutes of Health, where there are no other people. A number of people at the White House, or in close contact with White House staff, have recently tested positive for the virus, including one of President Donald Trump's valets, Vice President Mike Pence's press secretary, and Ivanka Trump's personal assistant. Trump and Pence have both been tested recently and the results were negative. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top epidemiologist and member of the White House's coronavirus task force, said he'll start a "modified quarantine" after coming into contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19, CNN reported Saturday evening. Fauci said the contact with the coronavirus patient, who is a White House staffer, was "low risk," meaning he did not have overly close contact with the person while they were contagious. Fauci told CNN his "modified quarantine" will consist of working from home and wearing a mask for 14 days, though he said he would also consider working at his office at the National Institutes of Health, since he would be the only one there. He also told the network he tested negative for COVID-19 on Friday, and will be tested every day going forward. The director of the Centers for Disease Control, Robert Redfield, has also begun self-quarantining after a similar "low-risk" exposure. Earlier this week, one of President Donald Trump's Oval Office valets tested positive for the virus. On Friday, news surfaced that Katie Miller, Vice President Mike Pence's press secretary and the wife of White House adviser Stephen Miller, tested positive. And on Friday evening, CNN reported that Ivanka Trump's personal assistant had also tested positive. It's unclear who the coronavirus patient Fauci had "low risk" contact with was, but Katie Miller frequently attended White House coronavirus task force meetings, according to CNN. The White House told CNN that Trump and Pence were tested again as a precaution, and that both tested negative. They are tested weekly with Abbott rapid result test devices. Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, also tested negative as of Friday. Trump and Pence have both drawn sharp backlash for not following the White House's own directive to wear masks when going out in public.Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Pathologists debunk 13 coronavirus myths
“Both the president and vice president had almost no interactions with the individual who tested positive,”...“Both the president and vice president had almost no interactions with the individual who tested positive,” the White House press secretary said.
Trump won't self-quarantine despite potential coronavirus exposure from Bolsonaro aide that caused 2 Republican senators to isolate
President Donald Trump has not been tested for coronavirus and is not in self-quarantine despite coming...President Donald Trump has not been tested for coronavirus and is not in self-quarantine despite coming into contact with a member of a Brazilian delegation that has reportedly tested positive for the coronavirus. White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement that Trump and Vice President Mike Pence "had almost no interactions with the individual who tested positive and do not require being tested at this time." Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro's press secretary, who Brazilian media reports has tested positive for the coronavirus, posted a picture on Instagram of himself standing directly beside Trump and Pence at the Mar-a-Lago club this past weekend. Republican Sens. Rick Scott and Lindsey Graham did go into quarantine after potentially coming into contact with the group. Graham received a test for coronavirus. Several Republican members of Congress entered self-quarantine out of an abundance of caution after coming into contact with an infected individual at the Conservative Political Action Conference in late February. Some of them subsequently had contact with Trump before learning of their potential exposure. Despite these possible exposures, Trump has so far not entered quarantine, or been tested. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. President Donald Trump has not been tested for coronavirus and has not entered self-quarantine, even after Republican Senators who had similar exposure to a reported COVID-19 patient this weekend chose to take these protective measures. Trump was at his West Palm Beach club in Mar-a-Lago earlier this week along with a group that included several other administration officials, Republican politicians, Fox News personalities, and other conservatives, according to 1100 Pennsylvania, a watchdog blog dedicated to documenting possible conflicts of interest and high-profile comings and goings at Trump's properties. Also in attendance: Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who was in Florida accompanied by a delegation this week. His spokesman Fabio Wajngarten, who accompanied the foreign leader on the trip and was at Mar-a-Lago, later tested positive for COVID-19 according to Brazilian media and CNN. Earlier this week, Wajngarten posted a photo of himself side by side with Trump and Vice President Mike Pence at Mar-a-Lago on Instagram. He sported a "Make Brazil Great Again" hat, a nod to the President's own statement accessory. “Make Brazil Great Again” @realdonaldtrump @mikepence @alvarogarnero 🇧🇷🇧🇷🇧🇷🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸 A post shared by Fabio Wajngarten (@fabiowajngarten) on Mar 7, 2020 at 4:47pm PST on Mar 7, 2020 at 4:47pm PST White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement to Insider that "The White House is aware of public reports that a member of the Brazilian delegation's visit to Mar-a-Lago last weekend tested positive for COVID-19; confirmatory testing is pending," Despite concerns that Trump and Pence may have been subsequently exposed to the coronavirus by standing right next to Wajngarten, Grisham that they "had almost no interactions with the individual who tested positive and do not require being tested at this time." However some of Trump's allies in Congress who may have been exposed to contact with Brazil's delegation have taken precautions. Within hours of each other on Thursday, Republican Sens. Rick Scott of Florida, and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, announced they would voluntarily self-quarantine after they were also in proximity with the Brazilian delegation in Florida. Scott said he has not been tested after consulting with doctors, but Graham has said he is awaiting the results of a test out of a abundance of caution. Neither reported experiencing symptoms of the coronavirus. Scott said that he met with Bolsonaro in Miami on Monday, and "while I do not believe I interacted with the infected person, that individual was in the same room as me." My decision today to self-quarantine is out of an abundance of caution. My priority is the health and safety of all Americans and I will continue working on my plan to combat the virus and protect American families. Read my statement ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/1rVq2SK6RY — Rick Scott (@SenRickScott) March 12, 2020 Graham was at Mar-a-Lago over the weekend, and while he had "no recollection of direct contact" with Bolsonaro or his spokesman, he was entering self-quarantine regardless. Statement from the Office of Senator Lindsey Graham pic.twitter.com/XyyZ9dnpTe — Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) March 12, 2020 Senator Marco Rubio also reportedly shook Bolsonaro's hand in Florida this week, CNN's Manu Raju reported. But at the moment, Rubio said he would not enter quarantine or receive a coronavirus test because he did not have any interaction with the Bolsonaro spokesman who tested positive. Statement from Senator Rubio’s office: pic.twitter.com/rVxfaLJBPU — Senator Rubio Press (@SenRubioPress) March 12, 2020 This isn't the first time Trump may have risked exposure to people who came into contact with a coronavirus patient. Several Republican members of Congress voluntarily went into quarantine this week after encountering a person at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) who later tested positive. At least two of those congressmen, Rep. Doug Collins of Georgia and Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, had contact with Trump after their potential exposure. Collins shook Trump's hand and accompanied him on a visit to the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta last Friday, while Gaetz hitched a ride on Air Force One on Monday before learning while still on the plane that he had contact with the CPAC attendee. Neither reported symptoms but both voluntarily self-quarantined.SEE ALSO: Here are all the members of Congress who have self-quarantined or closed their office because of coronavirus SEE ALSO: White House says Trump and Pence don't need to be tested for coronavirus because they had 'almost no interactions' with Brazilian official who tested positive Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Extremists turned a frog meme into a hate symbol, but Hong Kong protesters revived it as an emblem of hope