WASHINGTON, D.C. — Vice President Mike Pence is not planning to enter self-quarantine after his press secretary tested positive for coronavirus on Friday and plans to be at the White House on Monday, his office said on Sunday.
Pence spokesperson Devin O’Malley said the vice president “will continue to follow the advice of the White House Medical Unit and is not in quarantine.”
“Additionally, Vice President Pence has tested negative every single day and plans to be at the White House tomorrow,” O’Malley said in the statement.
The announcement comes as the White House continues to urge governors to begin reopening their states even as the virus has edged closer to the West Wing with news that top members of the coronavirus task force will self-quarantine, in some form, after coming in contact with an individual who tested positive for the virus.
An official said there is extreme sensitivity inside the White House at the current state of affairs with officials recognizing the contradiction in telling states to reopen while the White House enhances protocols to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
The official said Pence’s schedule will probably be on the lighter side in the coming days, but that he’s not doing a full self-quarantine.
Those steps come after President Donald Trump confirmed on Friday that Pence’s press secretary, Katie Miller, tested positive for the virus. The President said that Miller has not come into contact with him but noted that she has been in contact with Pence.
“She’s a wonderful young woman, Katie, she tested very good for a long period of time and then all of a sudden today she tested positive,” Trump said during a meeting with Republican members of Congress at the White House.
The news of Miller’s positive test has left everyone in the West Wing of the White House genuinely nervous, one White House source previously told CNN.
The source said Miller’s nature is to communicate in person so she makes lots of in-person contacts during her day-to-day work. The source added that West Wing staffers are concerned because her husband, Trump’s senior adviser Stephen Miller, also works in the building and has been inevitably exposed.
Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and US Surgeon General Jerome Adams, however, have both tested negative for the virus, according to government spokespeople. They are not planning to self-quarantine as of now.
HHS spokesperson Caitlan Oakley said Azar “will follow the advice of his physicians at the White House Medical Unit.”
And, a spokesperson for the Surgeon General said, “Surgeon General Adams was last tested for COVID-19 on Friday, May 8, and the results were negative. He was not in contact with anyone who has tested positive and at this time, has had no known exposure to the virus.
“Dr. Adams already participates in most meetings and events virtually, and will continue to do so. If the White House Medical Unit recommends any changes in Dr. Adams’ practices, he will of course comply.”