Two more members of the U.S. House of Representatives have tested positive for the coronavirus that originated in China and that has devastated the world economy while killing over 30,000 people.
Reps. Joe Cunningham (D-SC) and Mike Kelly (R-PA) both announced on Friday that they have tested positive for the coronavirus and that they are self-quarantining from home.
In a statement, Cunningham wrote:
On March 19th, 2020, I entered self-quarantine after I received word from the Attending Physician of the U.S. Congress that I had been in contact with a member of Congress who had since tested positive for COVID-19. While I otherwise feel fine, since March 17th I have been unable to smell or taste, which I learned this week is a potential symptom of COVID-19. I have been in contact with my doctor since I entered self-quarantine. Yesterday, my doctor instructed me to get tested for COVID-19 and following a virtual consultation on MUSC.care, I went to my local testing clinic. Today, I learned that I tested positive.
While my symptoms have begun to improve, I will remain at home until I know it is safe to leave self-quarantine. I will continue to tele-work from home as Congress conducts its ongoing response to this public health crisis and my office will continue its urgent work of serving the people of the Lowcountry. Just now, the House passed bipartisan legislation that includes provisions I fought for and secured to deliver much-needed relief for South Carolina families and small businesses. I am grateful that my family remains in good health and urge South Carolinians to follow the guidance and recommendations from the CDC and other health experts so that we can recover from this public health threat.
In a statement, Kelly wrote:
When I started experiencing mild flu-like symptoms earlier this week, I consulted my primary care physician. My doctor ordered a test for COVID-19, which I obtained at the drive-through testing site at Butler Memorial Hospital. My test came back positive this afternoon. Thank you to my doctor Bill DiCuccio and the staff at Butler Memorial for their excellent care. My symptoms remain mild, and I will serve the 16th district from home until I fully recover. Additionally, my staff is tele-working and still available to constituents who need assistance.
The news comes after Reps. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL), Ben McAdams (D-UT), and Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) all announced in recent days that they had tested positive for the coronavirus and that they were self-quarantining.
The U.S. federal government has passed multiple spending bills to combat the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S., and to combat the economic fallout that has ensued.
Lawmakers have also called for an international investigation into the Chinese communist government and their handling of the initial outbreak in China, while also demanding that China pay for the damage that the world has suffered.
In a statement, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) said that China must “pay back all nations impacted because China lied about the spread of the virus.”
“Since day one, the Chinese Communist Party intentionally lied to the world about the origin of this pandemic,” Hawley said. “The CCP was aware of the reality of the virus as early as December but ordered laboratories to destroy samples and forced doctors to keep silent. It is time for an international investigation into the role their cover-up played in the spread of this devastating pandemic. The CCP must be held to account for what the world is now suffering.”