Harris's Walter Reed visit unrelated to meeting with Texas Democrats: White House

Vice President Harris’s visit to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Sunday was reportedly unrelated to a meeting she held last week with a group of Texas Democrats, five of whom have since tested positive for COVID-19.

A White House official told NBC News that Harris’s trip to Walter Reed was for a routine doctor’s appointment. Bloomberg reported that the visit was previously scheduled.

Five of the Texas state Democrats who traveled to Washington, D.C., last week to block the passage of a sweeping elections reform bill have tested positive for COVID-19 since their trip.

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Members of the delegation met with Harris on July 13, according to the vice president’s senior adviser and chief spokesperson, Symone SandersSymone SandersWhite House confirms Harris got COVID-19 test after meeting with Texas Democrats Harris's Walter Reed visit unrelated to meeting with Texas Democrats: White House Number of Texas state Democrats to test positive for COVID-19 rises to 5 MORE.

Sanders, however, said Harris and her staff do not have to quarantine or be tested for COVID-19 because they were not in close contact with the lawmakers who later tested positive for the virus.

“Earlier today, it was brought to our attention that two of the members at that meeting tested positive for COVID-19. 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. The Vice President and her staff are fully vaccinated,” Sanders said in a statement late Saturday.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines say that people who have been exposed to someone with a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19 do not have to quarantine if they are fully vaccinated and are not showing symptoms. They should, however, monitor for symptoms for 14 days after the exposure.

The Texas state Democrats first revealed on Saturday that three of the lawmakers had tested positive for COVID-19. That number rose to five on Sunday night after the caucus announced two additional cases.