News

Someone Exposed CPAC to Coronavirus And Now Ted Cruz Has a Lot of Time on His Hands

The GOP Congressman is now in self-quarantine.
March 9, 2020, 4:20pm
Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, gets in to an elevator on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2020. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

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WASHINGTON — Coronavirus is rocking Capitol Hill.

Sen. Ted Cruz and Rep. Paul Gosar have both put themselves under self-quarantine after shaking hands during February’s Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC, with a person who was subsequently hospitalized with COVID-19, the disease resulting from the novel coronavirus.

Cruz and Gosar became the first members of Congress to have possibly come into contact with the virus that’s causing regional lockdowns in Italy and China, states of emergency across the U.S., and a white-knuckle drop in the stock market.

President Trump also spoke at CPAC and shook hands on stage with Matt Schlapp, the chairman of the American Conservative Union who has said he was in direct contact with the infected person. But there has been no indication that Trump is infected, and Trump insisted he’s not worried about the possibility that the virus might penetrate his administration.

“No, I’m not concerned at all,” Trump said Saturday, when asked whether he had any concerns about the virus getting closer to Washington D.C. or the White House.

Cruz said in a statement that he’s feeling “fine and healthy” after shaking hands and holding a “brief conversation” with the infected person during the conference, which took place February 26 to 29.

“The medical authorities have advised me that the odds of transmission from the other individual to me were extremely low,” Cruz said. But “to give everyone peace of mind, I have decided to remain at my home in Texas this week, until a full 14 days have passed since the CPAC interaction.”

Gosar suggested his time of exposure during the CPAC conference with the infected person was more significant, however, and that members of his staff were at risk too.

“I was with the individual for an extended period of time, and we shook hands several times,” Gosar said.

Gosar said neither he nor anyone on his staff is showing symptoms, but said he’ll stay home in Arizona until 14 days have passed.

Cover: Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, gets in to an elevator on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2020. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

This article originally appeared on VICE US.

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