Pence tests negative again for virus as Trump remains in hospital
Vice President Pence and second lady Karen Pence both tested negative for COVID-19 on Saturday morning, a White House official confirmed.
The vice president has tested negative two days in a row after President Trump revealed early Friday morning that he and first lady Melania Trump tested positive for the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.
The vice president’s health has become even more critical as Trump battles the virus. The president was taken to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center hospital on Friday evening. Officials said it was done out of an abundance of caution, though Trump has displayed symptoms since contracting the virus, including fatigue and a slight fever.
The White House said Friday that the president remained in charge and had not invoked the 25th Amendment to hand over his duties to Pence.
Pence’s doctor said Friday that the vice president does not have to quarantine and is not considered a close contact of any individuals who have tested positive. But Pence was in the front row of a large audience last Saturday in the Rose Garden for Trump’s nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.
Since then, several attendees have tested positive, including Sens. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) and former White House counselor Kellyanne Conway. Lee was seated in the row directly behind Pence for the outdoor event.
Pence also attended a Rose Garden event with Trump on Monday, though he used a separate lectern. The two men were on the road much of the rest of the week and were not seen interacting in person.
The vice president spent Friday working from home at the Naval Observatory, and he will do so again on Saturday. Pence, who is the head of the White House coronavirus task force, has a conference call with the group scheduled for Saturday afternoon.