Vice President Mike Pence on Sunday refuted reports that he is in self-isolation away from the White House after his press secretary tested positive for the coronavirus, according to a statement from his office.
“Vice President Pence will continue to follow the advice of the White House Medical Unit and is not in quarantine,” reads a statement from Devin O’Malley, his spokesperson. “Additionally, Vice President Pence has tested negative every single day and plans to be at the White House tomorrow.”
The vice president didn’t attend a meeting on Saturday with President Donald Trump and top military officials, according to Bloomberg News. The news organization also reported that he was staying at his home at the U.S. Naval Observatory in Washington “out of an abundance of caution.”
The White House was thrust into chaos late last week after one of Trump’s personal valets tested positive for the coronavirus. The unnamed individual is a member of the U.S. Navy and part of a military unit in the White House that frequently has close contact with Trump and his family.
Pence’s aide Katie Miller later tested positive for the virus, prompting concerns within the administration about an outbreak among White House staffers, The New York Times reported earlier Sunday.
“It is scary to go to work,” Kevin Hassett, a top economic adviser to the president, told CBS’ Face the Nation. “I think that I’d be a lot safer if I was sitting at home than I would be going to the West Wing.”
Senior Trump administration officials told the Times before the news broke of Pence’s self-isolation that he and Trump would not be kept apart “because of a concern that they both could be incapacitated by COVID-19.”
Dr. Anthony Fauci, Dr. Stephen Hahn, the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, and Dr. Robert R. Redfield, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed over the weekend that they will go into quarantine after exposure to a White House aide who tested positive.