Ted Cruz extends self-quarantine after second coronavirus interaction

Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzLawmakers announce legislation to fund government purchases of oil Overnight Energy: Oil giants meet with Trump at White House | Interior extends tenure of controversial land management chief | Oil prices tick up on hopes of Russia-Saudi deal Oil giants meet at White House amid talk of buying strategic reserves MORE (R-Texas) said he is extending his self-quarantine after learning he came in contact with a second person who has tested positive for the coronavirus.

His initial quarantine had been scheduled to end Thursday night.

“Unfortunately, last night I was informed I had a second interaction with an individual who yesterday tested positive for COVID-19," Cruz said in a statement Friday morning.

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He said that on March 3 he met for about 20 minutes with Santiago Abascal, head of Spain's Vox Party. Cruz said they sat at a conference table and shook hands twice, in addition to having pictures taken.

“My understanding is that Mr. Abascal tested positive for COVID-19 last night. His staff have informed us that he was asymptomatic at the time of our meeting and that several days after our meeting he had extended interactions with another individual who has also tested positive," Cruz said.

The senator went on to say that he was consulting with medical professionals but was not exhibiting any symptoms. Nonetheless, Cruz said he would extend his self-quarantine until March 17, a full two weeks after he met with Abascal.

Cruz first went into self-quarantine after learning he had come into contact with an individual at the Conservative Political Action Conference on Feb. 27 who later tested positive for the virus.

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Cruz and fellow GOP Sen. Tom CottonThomas (Tom) Bryant CottonThe Hill's Coronavirus Report: Former Trump advisor Bossert says to test the well, not ill; Senate standoff on next relief bill Trump's ambitious infrastructure vision faces Senate GOP roadblock  GOP lawmaker touts bill prohibiting purchases of drugs made in China MORE (Ark.) announced Thursday they would be closing their offices due to a staffer in Sen. Maria CantwellMaria Elaine CantwellHillicon Valley: State officials push for more election funds | Coronavirus surveillance concerns ramp up pressure for privacy bill | Senators warned not to use Zoom | Agencies ask FCC to revoke China Telecom's license Coronavirus surveillance concerns ramp up pressure to pass federal privacy law McConnell sets Friday night deadline for bipartisan deal on stimulus MORE’s (D-Wash.) office testing positive for the virus.

Cantwell said she was closing her office for a deep clean after the staffer tested positive.

There have been more than 1,700 cases of COVID-19 and at least 40 deaths from the virus in the U.S, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. Dozens of states and Washington, D.C., have issued emergency declarations, and several states have canceled K-12 schools for the coming weeks.