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House speaker Nancy Pelosi said on Friday she had been tested for the coronavirus out of an “abundance of caution” and claimed that tests being administered at the White House are “not as accurate as they should be,” after President Trump and the first lady tested positive for the virus.
“Out of an abundance of caution I was tested. I don’t have the results yet but hopefully soon,” Pelosi said in an appearance on MSNBC.
“I have concerns about the test because obviously the tests that are happening at the White House are not as accurate as they should be,” the California Democrat said. “That’s a discussion that we have to have especially when it has led to the exposure of the president of the United States. That should have been avoided.”
The White House tests people who come in contact with the president each day, though the rapid tests used by the White House are considered less accurate than lab tests that can take days to yield results.
The president and first lady were tested after senior aide Hope Hicks tested positive for the virus one day after flying with President Trump on Air Force One to a campaign rally in Duluth, Minn. on Wednesday. Hicks, who had tested negative for the virus the morning of the event, allowing her to board Air Force One, began showing symptoms around the time of the rally, according to the New York Times.
The president and first lady revealed on Friday that they were both experiencing “mild symptoms.”
White House physician Sean Conley said on Friday that the two were “well at this time” and that his medical team would “maintain a vigilant watch.” Trump will “continue carrying out his duties without disruption while recovering,” he said.
“It is no surprise that people get the infection, even with precautions,” White House coronavirus adviser Scott Atlas told Fox News. “I anticipate a complete and full and rapid recovery back to normal after his necessary confinement period,” adding that “there is zero reason to panic.”
Pelosi said the president’s penchant for “going into crowds unmasked and all the rest was sort of a brazen invitation for something like this to happen.”
“Sad that it did, but nonetheless hopeful that it will be a transition to a saner approach to what this virus is all about,” she said.
Pelosi, who is second in line to the presidency, behind Vice President Mike Pence, said she was keeping the president and first lady in her prayers.
She noted that Pence had tested negative for the virus and reassured Americans that “continuity of government is always in place.”