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Sen. Mitt Romney tests COVID-19 positive in breakthrough case

Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, has tested positive for COVID-19 in a breakthrough case, his office announced Friday. File Photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI
Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, has tested positive for COVID-19 in a breakthrough case, his office announced Friday. File Photo by Bonnie Cash/UPI | License Photo

Jan. 29 (UPI) -- Senator Mitt Romney has tested positive for COVID-19 in a breakthrough case.

"Senator Romney tested positive today for COVID-19," a statement from his office said Friday. "He is currently asymptomatic and will be isolating and working remotely for the recommended period of time. Mrs. Romney has tested negative. Both senator and Mrs. Romney have been fully vaccinated and boosted against the virus."

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Romney. R-Utah, is one of several lawmakers who have tested positive in recent weeks for COVID-19.

On Tuesday, the office of Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., who was also vaccinated against the virus, announced that he had tested positive for a breakthrough case.

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In a statement, the office said that Warner's symptoms "are extremely mild," and he "will be working from home in accordance with guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Office of the Attending Physician for the duration of his isolation period."

Other breakthrough COVID-19 cases in recent weeks, have impacted Sens. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, Rob Portman, R-Ohio, along with Reps. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y.

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Earlier this month, Capitol physician Brian Monahan said the seven-day average positivity rate for COVID-19 in the U.S. Capitol had risen from less than 1% to more than 13%.

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Monahan also urged lawmakers and staff to wear KN95 or N95 masks in the Capitol, especially to protect against the highly transmissible Omicron variant of COVID-19.

Across the United States, there were 572,524 new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported.

While evidence indicates the Omicron variant is less likely than the Delta variant to cause severe illness or death, The Hill reported, on Monday, the seven-day average number of U.S. COVID-19 deaths hit 2,166, surpassing the height of the Delta surge peak from mid-September, which was around 1,900.

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Before vaccines became widely available, daily deaths peaked at more than 4,000 deaths in a single day, a CDC data chart shows.

President Joe Biden's chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci said on Sunday he estimated the surge of COVID-19 cases fueled by the Omicron variant will peak by mid-February.

Fauci told ABC News' This Week he was "as confident as you can be" that the majority of states would see the peak of their Omicron infections within the next month, but he didn't want to be "overconfident" since the virus has "surprised us in the past."

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Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, COVID-19 has infected over 74 million people and killed 883,599 people in the United States, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

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