Romney tests negative for coronavirus, but remains absent in Senate

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Sen. Mitt Romney said Tuesday he’s tested negative for the novel coronavirus but will remain absent from the Senate out of an abundance of caution.

Romney, R-Utah, has missed votes on the third round of coronavirus relief legislation because of his contact with Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., who announced Sunday he tested positive for COVID-19.

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“Thankfully, I tested negative for COVID-19,” Romney tweeted, who was tested Monday. “Nevertheless, guidance from my physician, consistent with CDC guidelines, requires me to remain in quarantine as the test does not rule out the onset of symptoms during the 14-day period.”

Once Romney learned Paul tested positive, he ordered a charter flight back to Utah for a two-week quarantine. Fellow Utah Sen. Mike Lee hitched a ride on the plane because both had been in close contact with Paul, the Salt Lake Tribune reported.

Romney said he’s been wearing a tracksuit, working out on a stationary bike and conducting business via the phone.

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“My daughter-in-law brought me some food and put it outside the front door,” Romney told the paper. “My son Josh brought over tons of food. He went to Costco this morning and brought in all sorts of supplies for me: ramen, rice, beans, peanut butter, hotdogs, hamburger — all of my favorite food groups.”

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Senate Republicans have been down five members as they negotiate a massive stimulus package to aid workers and businesses devastated by the nationwide shutdown of the economy to stop the spread of the virus.

In addition to Paul, Romney and Lee, Sens. Cory Gardner of Colorado and Rick Scott of Florida have been in quarantine unrelated to contact with Paul. Paul is the only known senator to have tested positive for the virus.

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