Bi­den, Har­ris to get rou­tine virus test­ing

Chicago Sun-Times - - NATION/WORLD - BY ALEXAN­DRA JAFFE

WASHINGTON — In a no­table change, Demo­cratic pres­i­den­tial nom­i­nee Joe Bi­den and his run­ning mate, Ka­mala Har­ris, will now be reg­u­larly tested for the coro­n­avirus as the race heats up, a cam­paign aide con­firmed Mon­day.

“This an­nounce­ment is an­other step demon­strat­ing Joe Bi­den and Ka­mala Har­ris’ com­mit­ment to turn the page on Trump’s cat­a­strophic mis­man­age­ment dur­ing the worst public health cri­sis in 100 years,” said Bi­den spokesper­son An­drew Bates.

Bates de­clined to com­ment Mon­day when asked if Bi­den had been tested yet, though deputy cam­paign man­ager Kate Bed­ing­field said Sun­day that he hadn’t been.

A cam­paign aide said the de­ci­sion to move for­ward with reg­u­lar test­ing was based on the rec­om­men­da­tions of the cam­paign’s med­i­cal ad­vis­ers. It comes as the can­di­date and his run­ning mate are ex­pected to ramp up in-per­son cam­paign­ing in the fi­nal 10 weeks of the elec­tion. The news was first re­ported by Bloomberg.

Staffers who in­ter­act with the can­di­dates will also be tested reg­u­larly. And the cam­paign has pledged to make public if ei­ther Bi­den or Har­ris tests pos­i­tive for the virus.

Bi­den had said mul­ti­ple times over the past few months that he hasn’t been tested for the virus, say­ing he’s ex­pe­ri­enced no symp­toms. Still, the for­mer vice pres­i­dent is 77 and re­mains at higher risk for se­vere ill­ness if in­fected than the greater pop­u­la­tion, ac­cord­ing to the Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol and Preven­tion.

OLIVIER DOULIERY/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES

Demo­cratic pres­i­den­tial nom­i­nee Joe Bi­den and Sen. Ka­mala Har­ris last week.

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