President Joe Biden’s Attorney General Merrick Garland tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday, according to a statement from the Justice Department.
Garland tested positive following an antigen test and has shown no symptoms, the statement noted.
The attorney general has been vaccinated for the coronavirus and has received a booster shot. Garland took a COVID-19 test after being notified that he may have been exposed to the coronavirus.
“Attorney General Garland this afternoon tested positive for COVID-19 through antigen tests. He asked to be tested after learning that he may have been exposed to the virus. At the time, he is not experiencing symptoms. The Attorney General is fully vaccinated and boosted,” the statement read.
“In accordance with CDC guidelines, the Attorney General will isolate at home for at least five days. He will work virtually during this period and will return to the office following a negative test for the virus. The department will conduct contact tracing in accordance with CDC protocols,” it added.
News of the positive test was released hours after Garland met for a press conference with FBI Director Chris Wray and other law enforcement officials in Washington, D.C.
Wray announced “new and recent enforcement actions to disrupt and prosecute criminal Russian activity” during the event.
At a press conference this morning, #FBI Director Christopher Wray announced new and recent enforcement actions to disrupt and prosecute criminal Russian activity. Read his full remarks, as delivered, at https://t.co/nRasAWM0sT. pic.twitter.com/crOtwGZP8R
— FBI (@FBI) April 6, 2022
Garland is one of multiple political leaders to test positive for COVID-19 following attendance at a Saturday Gridiron Club dinner in Washington.
“Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., and Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, all attended Saturday’s event and have all tested positive for COVID-19 this week,” ABC News reported.
More than 600 guests reportedly attended the event, according to the Washington Post. In addition to political leaders testing positive for the virus, multiple journalists have reported positive tests since the event, though proof of vaccination was reportedly required to attend.
“In addition, about a half-dozen journalists as well as members of the White House and National Security Council staffs said they tested positive after the event. Their names are being withheld because they have not announced their status publicly,” the Washington Post revealed on Wednesday.
“Several White House aides who tested positive did so after traveling to Poland last week with President Biden and before the Gridiron dinner. White House press secretary Jen Psaki — who attended the Gridiron dinner — reiterated Wednesday that all White House employees who come in proximity to Biden are regularly tested,” the report added.
President Joe Biden appeared at the event via video but did not attend the event in person.
Both Dr. Anthony Fauci and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky also attended the event.