Biden adviser Richmond tests positive for COVID-19

Rep. Cedric RichmondCedric RichmondBiden set to flex clemency powers Democrats confront difficult prospects for midterms White House officials meet virtually with criminal justice reform advocates MORE (D-La.), a close adviser to President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenCaitlyn Jenner says election was not 'stolen,' calls Biden 'our president' Manchin, Biden huddle amid talk of breaking up T package Overnight Energy: 5 takeaways from the Colonial Pipeline attack | Colonial aims to 'substantially' restore pipeline operations by end of week | Three questions about Biden's conservation goals MORE, has tested positive for coronavirus, the Biden transition team said Thursday.

Biden is not considered a close contact of Richmond's based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, the transition said. Biden took a coronavirus test Thursday and tested negative.

Richmond traveled to Georgia with Biden for campaign events Tuesday, but their interactions "happened in open air, were masked and totaled less than 15 consecutive minutes, the CDC’s timeframe for close contact. Richmond traveled to Georgia on his own and not with the President-elect," transition spokesperson Kate BedingfieldKate BedingfieldPsaki signals she'll step down next year Fauci vs. Rogan: White House works to stomp out misinformation Joe Rogan clarifies vaccine comments: 'I'm not an anti-vax person' MORE said in a statement.


Richmond originally tested positive using a rapid test on Wednesday after he developed symptoms, the transition said. A second test Thursday confirmed the diagnosis.

"Richmond will quarantine for a period of 14 days and will produce two negative PCR tests before he returns to any in-person work in Congress or on the transition," Bedingfield said.

The transition team said two individuals who drove Richmond's car during the Georgia trip have gone into quarantine, but no members of the Biden staff or campaign teams for Jon Ossoff or the Rev. Raphael Warnock are considered close contacts, nor are Stacey Abrams or Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance BottomsKeisha Lance BottomsAtlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms says 'it is time to pass the baton on to someone else' Watch live: Atlanta mayor holds briefing after saying she won't run for reelection The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Emergent BioSolutions - Upbeat jobs data, relaxed COVID-19 restrictions offer rosier US picture MORE, who attended the rally.

Richmond is the closest person to Biden to test positive for the virus to date. The congressman's positive test was announced a day after the transition team shared that a reporter who had traveled with Biden to Georgia had tested positive for the virus. That positive test forced a Biden press staffer to go into quarantine, though reporters traveled on a separate plane from Biden.

Richmond is the latest member of Congress to contract COVID-19. Four other House members have also said in the last few days that they tested positive for COVID-19: Reps. Joe WilsonAddison (Joe) Graves WilsonStand and deliver — President Biden's maiden address to Congress Lawmakers want Biden to pressure Saudi Arabia to end Yemen blockade Biden faces deadline pressure on Iran deal MORE (R-S.C.), Barry LoudermilkBarry LoudermilkHouse Republicans request hearing with Capitol Police Board for first time since 1945 Democrats seek to keep spotlight on Capitol siege GOP lawmaker demands review over FBI saying baseball shooting was 'suicide by cop' MORE (R-Ga.), Ken CalvertKenneth (Ken) Stanton CalvertMORE (R-Calif.) and Mike RogersMichael (Mike) Dennis RogersFive questions about Biden withdrawal from Afghanistan Congress brings back corrupt, costly, and inequitably earmarks Biden defense budget criticized by Republicans, progressives alike MORE (R-Ala.).

The Louisiana congressman was a top adviser to the Biden campaign, and he is slated to join the Biden White House in a similar advisory role.

The 47-year-old has represented Louisiana’s 2nd Congressional District, which encompasses most of New Orleans, since 2011.