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article imageCapitol siege could turn out to be 'super-spreader' virus event

By Karen Graham     Jan 10, 2021 in Health
Lawmakers who hunkered down together for safety while a pro-Trump mob attacked the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday may have been exposed to someone in the same room who was infected with the coronavirus, according to Congress' attending physician.
“On Wednesday, January 6, many members of the House community were in protective isolation in a room located in a large committee hearing space,” Brian Monahan, the attending physician to Congress, wrote in an email that was sent to members of Congress on Sunday morning, according to the Washington Post.
“The time in this room was several hours for some and briefer for others. During this time, individuals may have been exposed to another occupant with coronavirus infection.”
Dr. Monahan did not divulge the location of the room, or how many house members were in the room, some for several hours, and he did not divulge the name of the person said to be infected with the coronavirus.
ABC News is reporting that many lawmakers and staff are furious over a video that was first published by Punchbowl News on Friday that showed a number of maskless Republicans — including Reps. Andy Biggs (Ariz.), Michael Cloud (Tex.), Markwayne Mullin (Okla.), and Scott Perry (Pa.) - refusing masks offered by Democratic Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester (Del.) while in the room.
Newly elected Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, an ally of the pro-Trump conspiracy group, QAnon. was also among those GOP members not wearing a mask.
Dr. Monaham recommended that anyone in the room watch for symptoms to develop, as well as wear masks and practice social distancing. He also suggested they have a coronavirus test.
Health officials said the attack could well turn out to be a super spreader event. The building was flooded by people not wearing masks, "then these individuals all are going in cars and trains and planes going home all across the country," said Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC.)
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