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Deadline accidentally publishes story about Pence being diagnosed with COVID-19

Online news website Deadline on Thursday admitted to accidentally publishing a draft story that incorrectly stated that Vice President Pence tested positive for COVID-19. 

“A draft post of a story about Vice President Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PenceTrump official tests positive for COVID-19 after Europe trip Trump team reinforces a fundamental reality: China must change Pence won't preside over Barrett's final confirmation vote MORE testing positive for coronavirus that was never meant to publish was accidentally posted on Deadline,” the news organization said in a statement on its website roughly 30 minutes after the story had been posted. The outlet added that the article was “pulled down immediately.”

“It never should have been posted and Deadline will take steps to see this kind of thing never happens again,” the statement continued. “Apologies to the Vice President and our readers. We regret the error.” 

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The vice president tested negative for the virus each day from Friday to Monday after news broke early last Friday morning that President TrumpDonald John TrumpGiuliani goes off on Fox Business host after she compares him to Christopher Steele Trump looks to shore up support in Nebraska NYT: Trump had 7 million in debt mostly tied to Chicago project forgiven MORE and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpThe Hill's Campaign Report: One week from Election Day | Biden looks to expand map | Trump trails narrowly in Florida, Arizona Melania Trump focuses on coronavirus in return to campaign trail Watch live: Melania Trump holds MAGA event MORE had contracted the disease.

The vice president tested negative again Wednesday ahead of the vice presidential debate against Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisBiden pushes into Trump territory The Hill's Campaign Report: One week from Election Day | Biden looks to expand map | Trump trails narrowly in Florida, Arizona The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - One week out, where the Trump, Biden race stands MORE (D-Calif.) in Utah. 

The draft Deadline story, which also appeared to have been shared on the outlet’s Twitter page, included the headline, “PREP. DO NOT PUBLISH UNTIL THE NEWS CROSSES. Vice President Mike Pence Tests Positive for Coronavirus 8 Days After Donald Trump.”

Multiple screenshots of the draft story shared by Twitter users appeared to report that “The two most powerful men in America now have coronavirus.” 

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While the vice president has not tested positive for the virus as of Thursday, several other members of Trump’s inner circle have contracted the virus in the past week, including top Trump aide Hope HicksHope Charlotte HicksDocuments show Trump campaign ignored coronavirus guidelines at Duluth rally: report Trump aide won't get into whether Trump has done debate prep Trump seeks to change race with final debate MORE, senior adviser Stephen MillerStephen MillerMcEnany appears on Fox in 'personal capacity' as Trump campaign adviser Documents show Trump campaign ignored coronavirus guidelines at Duluth rally: report House Democrats ask DHS to consider flu vaccinations for immigration detainees MORE and White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany

Several people who attended a White House Rose Garden ceremony for the official nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court have since tested positive for the virus. Attendees of the event were seen on tape and in images with no masks in close proximity to one another. 

Among them are former New Jersey Gov. Chris ChristieChris ChristieNIH halts study of Eli Lilly antibody drug for treating hospitalized COVID-19 patients White House to host swearing-in event for Barrett on Monday night Pence travel questioned after aides test positive MORE (R), former White House counselor Kellyanne ConwayKellyanne Elizabeth ConwayMelania Trump focuses on coronavirus in return to campaign trail McEnany appears on Fox in 'personal capacity' as Trump campaign adviser Melania Trump to hit campaign trail in Pennsylvania MORE and Sens. Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeWhite House to host swearing-in event for Barrett on Monday night Pence adviser Marty Obst tests positive for COVID-19 Two Loeffler staffers test positive for COVID-19 MORE (R-Utah) and Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland TillisNearly 47 percent of all North Carolina registered voters have already cast their ballots The coverage of the 2020 campaign is wrong Trump campaign asks Supreme Court to halt North Carolina absentee ballot plan MORE (R-N.C.).

According to an internal Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) memo obtained by ABC News Wednesday, an estimated 34 White House staffers and “other contacts” have been infected with the virus in recent days.