Story at a glance:
- Five Texas lawmakers are resting in a Washington, D.C., hotel after testing positive for COVID-19 .
- One is experiencing mild symptoms.
- Vice President Harris and Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) held prior meetings with the congressional members.
Six Texas Democrats traveling to Washington, D.C., to prevent a vote on a Republican election bill have tested positive for COVID-19.
Three lawmakers tested positive Saturday, while two more Democrats tested positive on Sunday and one tested positive on Monday — all of whom are fully vaccinated, and one of whom met with Vice President Harris in person, The New York Post reported.
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Now the six politicians are resting in a Washington, D.C., hotel, where they are expected to stay for a month.
The Democrats flew in a private jet to prevent the GOP from passing an election reform bill in Texas.
The Democrats traveled to the nation’s capital to stop a Republican-led effort that would prevent local officials from sending unsolicited absentee ballot applications and would require a driver’s license number or a social security number on the application, according to the New York Post.
The GOP also wants to stop 24-hour voting stations and drive-thru voting and ballot drop boxes, the Post reported.
Partisan poll watchers could also observe election workers at polls under the changes.
Republicans say these efforts would ensure voting integrity and prevent voter fraud.
State Reps. Celia Israel and Trey Martinez Fischer are among the two latest lawmakers to have tested positive for COVID-19. Israel said she is experiencing extremely mild symptoms. Texas House Democratic Caucus Chairman Chris Turner, who engaged with Harris and Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and others at in-person meetings, also tested positive, according to the Post.
Harris’s chief spokeswoman Symone Sanders said, “Based on the timeline of these positive tests, it was determined the vice president and her staff present at the meeting were not at risk of exposure because they were not in close contact with those who tested positive and therefore do not need to be tested or quarantined.”
Harris gets a “routine check-up” at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on the weekends.
This story was updated at 7:20 pm ET on July 19 with news of a sixth politician testing positive.
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