Speed Reads


Biden spent time with 'mid-level staff member' who tested positive for COVID, White House says

President Biden spent about a half hour on Friday "in proximity to" a staff member who tested positive for COVID-19 on Monday, the White House said Monday evening. The unidentified "mid-level staff member who does not regularly have contact with the president" was "fully vaccinated and boosted," tested negative before coming in contact with Biden aboard Air Force One on Friday, and didn't have any symptoms until Sunday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said. 

Biden tested negative through a routine antigen test Sunday and a rapid PCR test on Monday, and he'll get another test on Wednesday, Psaki said. "Others on Air Force One who were in close contact with this staff member are being contacted and will be advised to get tested per CDC guidance." 

Biden will not change his schedule, per CDC guidelines for vaccinated people, Psaki said, and the White House is disclosing this information because it has committed to informing the public about any COVID-19 cases among people who were in close contact with Biden, first lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, or her husband shortly before a positive test. Biden will still address the nation about the surge in cases of the Omicron variant, she added, but "this is not a speech about locking the country down."