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New York congressman tests positive for COVID-19, latest since Capitol riot

Rep. Adriano Espaillat, D-N.Y., spoke on the floor of the House of Representatives in April 2020.
Rep. Adriano Espaillat, D-N.Y., spoke on the floor of the House of Representatives in April 2020.Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. Rep. Adriano Espaillat said Thursday that he has the coronavirus, making the New York Democrat the latest House member to report testing positive since dozens huddled together for protection during the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.

Espaillat said in a release that he was quarantining at home and would keep up his work representing his Upper Manhattan district. He added that he'd received both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, but it wasn't immediately clear how recently he got the second shot.

At least three other House members have tested positive since the Capitol breach, when dozens of lawmakers were rushed to a secure location as supporters of President Donald Trump stormed and ransacked the building. Some members of Congress stayed for hours in the large room, while others were there for a shorter period.

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An inquiry was sent to a spokesperson for Espaillat about whether he was among those lawmakers.

It’s not clear where and when lawmakers caught the virus, but the Capitol’s attending physician has told all House members they might have been exposed to someone in the room who had the virus. The physician, Dr. Brian Moynihan, urged all members to get tested.

Three Democratic members — Reps. Brad Schneider of Illinois, Pramila Jayapal of Washington, and Bonnie Watson Coleman — announced earlier this week that they had tested positive. The three blasted some Republican colleagues who declined to wear face masks even when offered them in the secure room, as seen on video that subsequently surfaced.