Ralph Northam: Virginia Governor & 1st Lady Test Positive for COVID-19

Ralph Northam

Getty/Zach Gibson Virginia Ralph Gortham

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, a Democrat, and First Lady Pamela Northam have both tested positive for coronavirus, according to a statement released Friday morning, September 25.

According to the statement, a member of the governor’s residence staff, who worked within the Northam’s living quarters, started feeling symptoms and then tested positive. The Northams were then tested, and came up positive.

Northam is the second U.S. governor to test positive for coronavirus in two days.

Here’s what you need to know:

The Northams Were Tested After an Employee at the Governor’s Residence Came Up Positive & They ‘Remain in Good Spirits’

Northam said on Twitter that after he and the first lady got notice a member of their residence staff had symptoms and tested positive, they received PCR nasal swabs and tested positive.

Northam is not yet experiencing any symptoms, and the first lady has mild symptoms, a spokesman said.

On Wednesday evening, Governor Ralph Northam and First Lady Pamela Northam were notified that a member of the governor’s official residence staff, who works closely within the couple’s living quarters had developed symptoms and subsequently tested positive for COVID-19. Both the governor and first lady received PCR nasal swab tests yesterday afternoon, and both tested positive. Governor Northam is experiencing no symptoms. First Lady Pamela Northam is currently experiencing mild symptoms. Both remain in good spirits.

On the governor’s website, a spokesman said that they will self-isolate for 10 days. Northam will continue to work from the executive mansion.

“As I’ve been reminding Virginians throughout this crisis, COVID-19 is very real and very contagious,” Northam said. “The safety and health of our staff and close contacts is of utmost importance to Pam and me, and we are working closely with the Department of Health to ensure that everyone is well taken care of. We are grateful for your thoughts and support, but the best thing you can do for us—and most importantly, for your fellow Virginians—is to take this seriously.”

Northam Instituted a Statewide Mask Mandate After He Took Heat in May for Greeting Supporters Without One

On May 23, Northam took a trip to Virginia Beach, on which he met with supporters without a mask.

A spokeswoman later emphasized the importance of mask-wearing and said Northam should have been wearing one, the Associated Press reported.

“He was outside yesterday and not expecting to be within six feet of anyone,” the spokeswoman said in a statement. “This is an important reminder to always have face coverings in case situations change — we are all learning how to operate in this new normal, and it’s important to be prepared.”

Days later, Northam signed an executive order mandating that masks be worn statewide in indoor public spaces, with some exceptions, NBC 12 reported.

The state is currently in Phase 3 of its reopening, with indoor dining permitted with appropriate social distancing. The mask order remains in place, however, according to the state department of health.

Missouri Governor Mike Parson Also Tested Positive This Week; He Has Long Refused a Mask Mandate Is Often Seen Without a Mask in Public


Getty/Tom PenningtonGovernor Mike Parson, center, talks with Gary Player and Johnny Morris at the Payne’s Valley Cup on September 22, 2020.

Missouri Republican Governor Mike Parson, an opponent of mandatory mask wearing, tested positive for coronavirus on Wednesday as well, ABC reported. The first lady, Teresa Parson, also tested positive.

On Thursday, Parson posted a video update on himself and Teresa, telling Missourians that his wife has minor symptoms, but is “doing fine,” and that he was also “doing fine.”

“I feel fine,” Parson said. “I still show no symptoms, so for me it’s business as usual. I’m just doing it remotely.”

On Friday, September 18, Parson appeared with other Republican officials at a campaign barbecue in Springfield, local ABC affiliate KMBC reported.

Parson and four other candidates were not wearing masks, not standing six feet apart, when they took the stage, and Twitter took notice.

“And you still have no mask on!” one user responded. “How the hell do you expect everyone else to mask up when you don’t do it 100% of the time? You can talk through a mask. I do it all day, including while on the phone! Social distancing is not enough. Be the example!”

Another said, “Every statewide official should self-quarantine for 14 days and get tested. How incompetent?”

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