Lawmakers may have been exposed to coronavirus during Capitol riot lockdown

Several lawmakers who went into lockdown during rioting by pro-Trump demonstrators at the Capitol last week were hunkered down with a person who tested positive for the coronavirus, the House Office of the Attending Physician said Sunday. 

“On Wednesday January 6, many members of the House community were in protective isolation in room located in a large committee hearing space,” Brian Monahan, Congress's attending physician, said in an email to lawmakers, 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,” Monahan wrote. “Please continue your usual daily coronavirus risk reduction measures (daily symptom inventory checklist, mask wear, and social distancing). Additionally, individuals should obtain an RT-PCR coronavirus test next week as a precaution.”


Monahan did not offer specifics the room in which the infected individual was located during the lockdown or the other lawmakers that were there. 

Hundreds of pro-Trump demonstrators descended upon the Capitol last Wednesday following a "Stop the Steal" rally on the National Mall, an event during which President TrumpDonald TrumpKushner lands book deal, slated for release in 2022 Biden moves to undo Trump trade legacy with EU deal Progressives rave over Harrison's start at DNC MORE encouraged the mob to march to the Capitol. 

Some demonstrators were able to force their way into the building as a joint session of Congress moved to certify Joe BidenJoe BidenMellman: Trump voters cling to 2020 tale FDA authorizes another batch of J&J vaccine Cotton warns of China collecting athletes' DNA at 2022 Olympics MORE's Electoral College victory in the 2020 presidential election. 

The break-in sent lawmakers into hiding and forced the proceedings to come to a halt for several hours.

The chaos was linked to five deaths, including a member of law enforcement, and dozens of people have been arrested in the following days in connection with the incident. 

More than 100 lawmakers have either contracted, recovered from or gone into quarantine as a result of coming into contact with someone who has tested positive for the virus. 


More than 2 million cases of the coronavirus have been recorded in the United States, with more than 370,000 related deaths reported.