Number of Texas state Democrats to test positive for COVID-19 rises to 5
Two more Texas state Democrats have tested positive for COVID-19 after traveling to Washington, D.C., last week, bringing the total number of cases to five as of Sunday evening.
The Texas House Democratic Caucus announced the additional positive COVID-19 tests in a statement. The positive cases follow three other ones announced by the caucus the previous day.
July 19 (UPI) —2 more Texas state Democrats have confirmed they tested positive for COVID-19 for a total of five to be sicken by the virus after fleeing the state to prevent Republicans from passing a restrictive voting law last week.
Trey Martinez Fischer and Celia Israel, both fully vaccinated, said Sunday that they had contracted the virus nearly a week after they were among the roughly 60 Democratic state representatives who flew to Washington, D.C., upon two planes last Monday to deny the Republicans the quorum needed to pass a controversial restrictive voting bill during a special legislative session.
“In light of some positive COVID-19 tests over the weekend, the House Democratic Caucus has decided to go beyond CDC guidance and provide daily rapid tests for all Members and staff in Washington D.C. for this week,” the caucus said in its statement.
“As part of this precautionary testing, today two additional Members who were fully vaccinated tested positive,” the caucus continued, saying that all of the members who tested positive either do not have symptoms or have only mild symptoms and feel good.
In a statement late Sunday, Martinez Fischer said his Democratic colleagues knew the personal risk they were taking.
“When my Texas House Democratic colleagues and I broke quorum to stop anti-voter legislations, we knew that tactic would come with real personal sacrifice,” he said. “Those sacrifices are made more real as we grapple with the pandemic that has touched everyone in some way.”
Martinez Fischer said he was notified Sunday morning of his positive test result and was quarantining until he produces a negative reading.
“I am grateful to be only experiencing extremely mild symptoms,” he said.
Israel said her test result came back positive for the virus Saturday.
“I’m doing well and hope to get over the infection quickly with only mild symptoms,” she said. “I am currently quarantining until I test negative.”
Their announcements came after three other fully vaccinated Democrats tested positive for COVID-19 on Friday night. Those three members were not identified.
The Texas House Democratic Caucus on Sunday announced that in light of the positive tests over the weekend, it would “go beyond” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance and provide daily rapid tests to all members and staff in Washington, D.C.
“All of the [House Democratic colleagues] who tested positive are feeling good, with no symptoms or only mild symptoms,” it said in a statement. “The HDC will, and ask others to, respect the privacy of Members and their personal health.”
Donna Howard, a Democratic House representative for Texas, tweeted Sunday that they are following COVID-19 health and safety protocols.