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Vice President Harris has tested positive for COVID-19

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris walk to the Oval Office after an event in the Rose Garden on April 11, 2022.
Carolyn Kaster
/
AP
President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris walk to the Oval Office after an event in the Rose Garden on April 11, 2022.

Vice President Harris has tested positive for COVID-19, the White House announced Tuesday.

Harris has exhibited no symptoms and will isolate at home.

"She has not been a close contact to the President or First Lady due to their respective recent travel schedules," the White House said. "She will follow CDC guidelines and the advice of her physicians. The Vice President will return to the White House when she tests negative."

Harris spent last week in California, and returned to Washington Monday night, so she had not met with Biden in person in recent days.

Like Biden, Harris had been cautious about the virus, masking indoors and minimizing large gatherings. The White House dropped most of those precautions this spring, and since then, has seen several cases, amid a larger uptick in Washington, D.C.

The diagnosis comes weeks after her husband, second gentleman Doug Emhoff, tested positive. And earlier this month, more than a dozen attendees of the annual Gridiron dinner — including Jamal Simmons, Harris' communications director — were known to have tested positive for COVID-19. At that time, Attorney General Merrick Garland also tested positive, as well as Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and Reps. Adam Schiff and Joaquin Castro. All were guests at the dinner. Harris did not attend it.

The COVID-19 diagnosis makes Harris the highest-profile U.S. leader to contract the coronavirus since former President Donald Trump, who tested positive for COVID-19 during the final month of the 2020 presidential campaign.

Earlier this month, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who is vaccinated and boosted, announced tested positive.

Harris was fully vaccinated with the Moderna vaccine, and had received a booster shot this fall. Everyone in close proximity to Harris is regularly tested, as is the case for Biden and other high-level White House officials.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Scott Detrow is a White House correspondent for NPR and co-hosts the NPR Politics Podcast.