Several Dozen Secret Service Agents Are in Self-Isolation amid White House COVID-19 Outbreak
On the heels of the 2020 presidential election, numerous Secret Service agents have been put into self-isolation due to COVID-19 exposure.
According to a report from The Washington Post, more than 130 Secret Service members are isolating after they tested positive for the novel coronavirus or had previously come in contact with a person infected with the illness. The Secret Service helps protect the nation's leaders, including President Donald Trump.
Citing three people familiar with agency staffing who spoke on the condition of remaining anonymous, the Post notes that the outbreak has "sidelined roughly 10 percent of the agency’s core security team" — and has been linked to numerous Trump rallies held in the weeks prior to the Nov. 3 presidential election.
Coronavirus cases have been on the rise across the United States, with more than 163,402 new cases reported on Thursday, according to data compiled by The New York Times.
The report comes as other staffers close to the president have recently been diagnosed with the respiratory illness.
Earlier this week, White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows tested positive for COVID-19, as did Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson. Similarly, Trump's senior campaign adviser Corey Lewandowski also tested positive this past week, per CNBC.
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David Bossie, who has been named as the head of the president’s legal battle against the November election results, was also diagnosed with the illness, USA Today adds.
And according to the report from The Washington Post, eight additional staffers at the Republican National Committee are also sick with COVID-19.
A source who spoke with CNN about the situation also noted that all secret service agents who worked on the campaign trail are being tested for COVID-19.
"The USSS [United States Secret Service] is taking all necessary precautions and putting anyone who is considered close contact in quarantine," the official told the publication. "There has been zero impact on the mission. Staffing levels are high enough to manage."
But, one of The Washington Post's sources adds that "being down more than 100 officers is very problematic," and that it "does not bode well for White House security."
Officers who are not infected with COVID-19 will be expected to work longer hours and give up their days off to cover for their coworkers who are unable to work.
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