Mike Pompeo quarantines after COVID-19 exposure, cancels last holiday party

Mike Pompeo
(Image credit: TAMI CHAPPELL/AFP via Getty Images)

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has called off a planned holiday party as he heads into quarantine due to a COVID-19 exposure.

The State Department said Wednesday that Pompeo was "identified as having come into contact with someone who tested positive for COVID," CNBC reports. He tested negative for COVID-19 but will now follow CDC guidelines and quarantine, the department said.

Pompeo has also now canceled his final major holiday party of the year, The Washington Post reports. The State Department reportedly told staff that the party that was set for Wednesday has been canceled, while foreign embassies were told it was postponed "due to unforeseen circumstances." Pompeo skipped a Cabinet meeting with President Trump on Wednesday due to the COVID-19 exposure, as well.

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The secretary of state had faced criticism for holding a series of indoor holiday parties despite COVID-19 cases surging in the U.S., although the Post reported this week that only a few dozen people attended an indoor party he hosted on Tuesday, despite more than 900 guests being invited. It wasn't clear, the Post says, whether Wednesday's party was canceled due to COVID-19 concerns or due to the low attendance on Tuesday.

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