Politics

GOP Senator Chuck Grassley, 87, exams optimistic for coronavirus

Senator Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, has tested positive for coronavirus.

Lawmakers, who are at high risk of serious illness at 87, tweeted Tuesday that it tested positive hours after saying it would isolate after contacting someone who was infected.

Grassley, who is temporarily President of the Senate, presided over the chamber during Monday's voting. He is at the top of the presidential succession, behind Vice President Mike Pence and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Grassley is the second oldest senator, a few months younger than the also 87-year-old California Democrat Dianne Feinstein.

The Republican said he felt "good" and would work from home.

While Grassley isolated after exposure to the virus, he missed Tuesday's vote on Judy Shelton's nomination for the Federal Reserve. Senator Rick Scott, R-Fla., Was also absent from the Capitol for the procedural vote as he was isolated from exposure to Covid-19. Shelton's nomination failed after three other Republicans announced their opposition.

The virus has taken its toll in Congress as it infects a record number of people across the country. Grassley is the sixth Senator to test positive for Covid-19.

At least three members of the House of Representatives tested positive this month. This includes 87-year-old Don Young, the longest-serving lawmaker in the chamber.

Grassley's home state of Iowa has seen one of the worst coronavirus outbreaks in the country in terms of per capita infections. The state most recently reported 2,071 cases, up about 17% from a week earlier, according to the Covid Tracking Project.

Here is the full version from Grassley's office:

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley tested positive for COVID-19 after learning of exposure to the coronavirus earlier today.

"This morning I learned that I was exposed to the coronavirus. I received a COVID-19 test and immediately started quarantine. While I am still feeling good, the test was positive for the coronavirus. I continue to follow my doctors I will continue my work for the people of Iowa from home. I appreciate everyone's good wishes and prayers and look forward to resuming my normal schedule if I can. In the meantime, my offices across Iowa and Washington remain open and ready to serve Iowans, "said Grassley.

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