Gohmert was scheduled to fly an Air Force One ship with President Donald Trump to Midland, Texas on Wednesday, where the president hosted a fundraiser and set off for an oil rig. Gohmert’s test for coronavirus was positive during a pre-flight inspection at the White House on Wednesday morning, a person familiar with the situation told CNN.
A senior Republican assistant, CNN, said the test results caused mountain problems when “many workers” were told to take tests so they could go to meetings and resume activities. Some are sequestrants in their offices before they can be tested. Gohmert’s office informed Republican leaders, who informed the chamber’s medical staff, and the minutes were raised for further reporting.
Gohmert posted a video on Twitter saying, “It is too early to report my death,”; noting that he was asymptomatic. “I don’t have any of the symptoms listed as Covid-19, but apparently I have Wuhan virus,” he said.
Several lawmakers have said they intend to self-quarantine in response to Gohmert’s condition, including fellow Texas Republican Rap Kay Granger, who recently sat next to Gohmert.
Raul Grijalva, a spokesman for Arizona Democrats who chaired the House’s Natural Resources Committee, said he would also isolate.
“I will self-quarantine until I take the test, then again until the results are available. Meanwhile, my work schedule and the lives of my employees are disrupted,” Grijalva said in a statement. “It stems from the selfish deed of Mr. Gohmert, who is just one member of Congress.”
Public position criticizing masks
Gohmert told CNN last month he was not wearing a mask because he had been tested and had no virus yet. “But if I get it, you’ll never see me without a mask,” he said.
In an interview on Wednesday, KETK Gohmert hinted that he may have contracted the coronavirus by improperly wearing a mask.
“I can’t be surprised if, while holding the mask and holding it in place, I might have put some microbes or a virus on the mask and inhaled,” Gohmert said. He added that in the last two weeks he has been wearing the mask for more than the last three or four months.
“I can’t help but notice that if I haven’t worn the mask in the last 10 days, I’m really wondering if I would have bought it,” Gohmert added. “You know, moving the mask to make it right, we definitely put the virus on the mask I sucked in. It probably happened.”
Improper wearing of the mask, including touching and applying it in public, can infect the virus. Face masks are most effective when the wearers do not touch their face or move the mask. However, Gohmert’s claim that such a scenario is “most likely” as it was infected is questionable, as experts say the virus spreads primarily through personal contact.
He said having the virus does not change his attitude towards wearing masks, but now that he has it, he will “religiously wear a mask” if possible, he will contact someone else.
“I won’t be near anything for the next 10 days without even making sure I have a mask,” Gohmert said. “Because that’s the real danger. Once you have it, give it to someone else and, most importantly, the mask.”
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that people who test positive for the virus avoid people, if possible, for 10 days if they have no symptoms, and otherwise until their symptoms go away for at least 24 hours. Gohmert, who has no symptoms, said he would isolate for 10 days under these recommendations.
Other members of the Republican House questioned the use of masks
Gohmert is just one of several conservative Republicans who have retired from wearing masks at the Capitol, sometimes causing tension during committee meetings.
At Tuesday’s meeting, attended by Attorney General Bill Barr, the chairman of the court’s judicial committee, Jerry Nadler, called on a handful of Republican members to wear masks.
“I would like to remind Mr. Jordan, p. Biggui and p. Johnson that you need to stop breaking the rules of the committee, stop breaking the safety of the members of the committee, stop treating yourself careless by refusing to wear masks. “said the New York Democrat, referring to the GOP Repps. Jim Jordan of Ohio, Andy Biggs of Arizona and Mike Johnson of Louisiana.
“Is it allowed to drink a sip of coffee?” Johnson cut off.
Gohmert was also present at the hearing. During the process, he wore a mask and was not included in the group. Nadler rebuked. However, he was seen without a mask outside, near Barro.
Barr was tested for coronavirus on Wednesday and the test was negative, a Justice Department official said. The incubation period for the virus can be from two to 14 days.
At Wednesday’s next meeting, California Democrat Zoe Lofgren intervened to remind physically present members that they must wear a mask.
“He was a member who didn’t want to wear a mask all the time,” Lofgren said of Gohmert. “We remind you that this is a very serious problem. If you don’t want to wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth, leave the room and we’ll make sure you attend remotely.”
New York Democrat Hakeem Jeffries, chairman of the House Democratic Chamber, also responded to the news.
“I am concerned about the irresponsible behavior of many Republicans who have consistently chosen not to follow established public health guidelines, perhaps with regard to their boss, Donald Trump, who is the leader of the anti-mask movement in America. “Jeffries said at a news conference. “It’s a concern.”
Covid-19 on Capitol Hill
Many lawmakers detected positive viral viruses in the early days of the pandemic, while others had quarantined after being exposed to the virus.
The House has taken precautions to limit the spread of the virus, including a form of remote voting for members who are unwilling or unable to travel. Physically present members now vote in alphabetical groups to limit how many people are on the floor of the house at one time. Members have also adopted virtual meeting technology for many chamber meetings.
May. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell jointly rejected the White House’s proposal to send rapid testing resources to the Capitol complex.
They said they wanted to “direct resources to anti-virus phones” and that lawmakers and staff would use “current test protocols developed by the on-call doctor’s office until these faster technologies become more widely available. “
House majority leader Steny Hoyer said on Wednesday that the house does not currently oblige lawmakers to carry out tests, but “we are discussing this”.
“I think this is the moment when we should discuss this again,” Hoyer said.
This story was updated additionally on Wednesday.
CNN Clare Foran and Evan Perez contributed to this report.