Senator of Kentucky who was seen at the Senate gym Sunday morning says he is feeling fine and is in quarantine
Senator Rand Paul has said he has tested positive for Covid-19, the disease caused by coronavirus, with the Republican becoming the first member of the Senate to test positive.
A post on the Kentucky senators Twitter account said on Sunday that he is feeling fine and is in quarantine.
Paul, an eye surgeon, said he has not had symptoms and was tested out of an abundance of caution due to his extensive travel and events. Paul said he was not aware of any direct contact with any infected person.
The senator was on Capitol Hill this past week, including at a luncheon Friday among GOP senators.
He spoke on the Senate floor on Wednesday afternoon, addressing the coronavirus and an amendment he sponsored that would pay for virus relief efforts by withdrawing US forces from Afghanistan.
A spokesman for Senator Jerry Moran, of Kansas, said Moran briefly saw Paul at the Senate gym Sunday morning and that he shared that information with GOP colleagues at a policy meeting.
Moran followed CDC guidelines and kept a safe distance between him and Senator Paul, spokesman Tom Brandt said. Moran has spoken with the attending physician at the Capitol and has been told he does not need to self-quarantine, Brandt said.
South Dakota Senator John Thune, the second-ranking Republican senator, said on the Senate floor that lawmakers will consult with the attending physician about all senators who have been in contact with Paul.
Senator Mitt Romney, of Utah, said he was praying for Paul and noted that Pauls health is compromised. Paul, 57, broke several ribs in 2017 when a neighbor assaulted him over a long-standing landscaping dispute. Paul, who was later awarded $580,000 in damages and medical expenses, had surgery last year to remove part of a lung damaged by the assault.
Two House members, Representatives Mario Diaz Balart of Florida of Ben McAdams of Utah, have tested positive.
The Senate was in session Sunday seeking a bipartisan response to the pandemic. If approved, the bill would be the third measure Congress has approved in response to the coronavirus this month.
Paul, a deficit hawk, was among eight Senate Republicans who voted against a House-passed bill last week that provided more than $100bn to boost testing for the coronavirus and guarantee paid sick leave for millions of workers.
He also was the only Republican senator who opposed an earlier bill authorizing $8.3bn for initial response to the coronavirus.