“Today, Marc Short, Chief of Staff to the Vice President, tested positive for COVID-19, began quarantine and assisting in the contact tracing process,” O’Malley said in a statement. “Vice President Pence and Mrs. Pence both tested negative for COVID-19 today, and remain in good health.”
O’Malley added, “While Vice President Pence is considered a close contact with Mr. Short, in consultation with the White House Medical Unit, the Vice President will maintain his schedule in accordance with the CDC guidelines for essential personnel.”
Pence aides did not immediately respond to questions about when Short and Pence were last in contact. Short was at work Friday and told colleagues that there would be aggressive travel in the days leading up to the election.
By Saturday, Short was said to have been experiencing symptoms, according to two administration officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss a private matter.
Short did not respond to a request for comment.
Short, who has pressed for the vice president to keep a robust travel schedule, is likely to be isolating through the election.
In addition, Marty Obst, a top outside political adviser to Pence, also has tested positive for the coronavirus, according to an administration official. Obst’s infection was first reported by Bloomberg News. Obst did not respond to a request for comment.
At least three people in the vice president’s orbit have tested positive for the coronavirus. Officials have declined to name the third person.
As the vice president’s chief of staff, Short has played a lead role on the White House coronavirus task force, which Pence chairs, and has been one of the more skeptical voices inside the West Wing about the threat of the virus. He has advocated against lockdowns and other restrictive measures that public health officials say are necessary to slow the spread of the virus.
Pence released a schedule late Saturday that indicates he will travel to North Carolina on Sunday.
#Pences #chief #staff #Marc #Short #tests #positive #coronavirus