Five members of the Texas Democratic Party delegation of lawmakers who fled the state in order to block the passage of restricting voting laws have tested positive for COVID-19.
The Texas House Democratic Caucus responded to the initial three positive tests by administering further testing to the lawmakers and staff. From these second tests, two more lawmakers returned negative tests. The group was fully vaccinated and the vaccine has been effective at protecting against severe illness. The Caucus has since reported that “all of the HDC Members who tested positive are feeling good, with no symptoms or only mild symptoms.”
Rep. Celia Israel has identified herself as among the five who returned positive tests. Texas state Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer also revealed Sunday that he had tested positive for the virus and released a statement in which he said he would be working remotely until returning a negative test.
“I will be tele-working with my colleagues, staff, partners, and allies. We’re planning more good trouble, and hope to make announcements soon,” he said in a statement. “Democracy is in jeopardy, and we will not be stopped in our fight to protect it.”
Last week, members met with Vice President Kamala Harris, as well as with members of Congress, including Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin. According to Harris senior adviser and chief spokesperson Symone Sanders, the Vice President was “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.” According to current CDC guidance, fully vaccinated people who have been exposed to Covid-19 but are not showing symptoms do not need to quarantine or get tested for the virus following their exposure.