More than 130 Secret Service agents have been forced to self-quarantine amid a coronavirus outbreak at the White House. According to the Washington Post, the outbreak is believed to be linked to President Donald Trump's aggressive travel schedule in the week leading up to the presidential election.
The paper did not say how many of the agents tested positive for COVID-19 or how many were in isolation as a precaution due to being exposed to somebody who tested positive.
The news comes as the White House deals with another coronavirus outbreak. White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and Trump campaign officials Corey Lewandowski and David Bossie all tested positive a few days after an election party at the White House. The Republican National Committee said that eight staff members have tested positive, including Chief of Staff Richard Walters.
The number of agents unable to work is concerning because it forces other agents to work more hours and give up their days off.
"Being down more than 100 officers is very problematic," one former senior Secret Service supervisor told the Post. "That does not bode well for White House security."
The Secret Service told The Hill that it takes the threat of COVID-19 seriously and has a plan in place to ensure the health of safety of the agents and their families.
"The Secret Service maintains well-established protocols inclusive of testing, conducting contact tracing related to confirmed and suspected exposure, and immediately isolating of any employee who tests positive for COVID-19," the agency said. "This program ensures that every precaution is taken to keep our protectees, employees, families, and the general public safe and healthy."
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