"She will follow CDC guidelines"
The White House has announced that Vice President Kamala Harris tested positive for Covid-19 following a weeklong trip to California.
She is not showing any symptoms and has not been in close contact with President Joe Biden or First Lady Jill Biden.
In a statement, Kirsten Allen, the Vice President’s press secretary, said:
“Today, Vice President Harris tested positive for Covid-19 on rapid and PCR tests.
“She has exhibited no symptoms, will isolate and continue to work from the Vice President’s residence.
“She has not been a close contact to the President or First Lady due to their respective recent travel schedules.
“She will follow CDC guidelines and the advice of her physicians. The Vice President will return to the White House when she tests negative.”
Kamala Harris had been set to receive her intelligence briefing alongside President Biden.
She did not participate in any events or meetings at the White House.
Harris arrived at the White House and took a test. After testing positive on both PCR and rapid tests, she returned home to her residence at the Naval Observatory, where she will be isolating.
An official said Harris last saw President Biden at the Easter Egg Roll on April 18. She left Washington for California that afternoon and didn’t return until April 25, 2022.
Whilst in California, she held events on portfolio issues. Harris held no public events over the weekend before returning to the nation’s capital.
One official said Harris tested negative through her “regular” testing up until April 26.
The Vice President’s positive Covid-19 test comes as the US has largely lifted most of its Covid-19 mitigation measures after the Omicron variant spike over the winter.
In accordance with federal public health guidelines, officials and visitors have not been required to wear masks or socially distance at large White House events.
Since their peak in early January, Covid cases in Washington have declined. However, cases have been rising recently.
Though the White House has continued to hold crowded indoor events where masks are optional and officials have forgone masks in public, the administration has said they are going beyond federal guidelines to detect Covid-19 in the building.
According to White House press secretary Jen Psaki, the White House is not thinking about returning to pandemic-era restrictions.
She said: “We are continuing to implement the return-to-work policy and feel we have the measures necessary to do that.”