Congress May Shut Down As Older Lawmakers Grow Concerned Over Coronavirus

Some members of Congress are pushing for an extended recess as older lawmakers grow increasingly concerned over the spread of coronavirus.

Lawmakers are “increasingly anxious” and there is “growing pressure” on leaders to recess for several weeks, NBC News reported.

Lawmakers planned to raise concerns to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Monday.

“Congress as a whole could be more susceptible to dangerous symptoms of the coronavirus than the public in general,” NBC reported. “Sixty-six senators are over 60 — two-thirds of the body — with more than a quarter over 70. The average age of House members is 57.6 years, according to the Congressional Research Service.”

Many members "are concerned, particularly older members and a number who have conditions that make them more susceptible," a source told NBC News.

Cruz will self-quarantine:

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz announced he will self-quarantine after meeting with a person who tested positive for coronavirus at CPAC.

“I'm not experiencing any symptoms, and I feel fine and healthy. Given that the interaction was 10 days ago, that the average incubation period is 5-6 days, that the interaction was for less than a minute and I have no current symptoms, the medical authorities have advised me that the odds of transmission from the other individual to me were extremely low," Cruz said. "Nevertheless, out of an abundance of caution . . . I have decided to remain at my Texas home this week, until the full 14 days have passed since the CPAC interaction."

Paul Gosar too:

"I am not currently experiencing any symptoms, nor is any member of my staff," Gosar said in a statement. "However, in order to prevent any potential transmission, I will remain at my home in Arizona until the conclusion of the 14-day period following my interaction with this individual."

Congress’ Office of Attending Physician said “several” lawmakers interacted with the person at CPAC.

"The specific recommendations given to each were based upon their individual risk exposure which was determined through a medically-confidential dialogue between the person and the public health officer. Some of these identified individuals elected to observe a management strategy characterized as 'an abundance of caution' and self-imposed a 14-day quarantine period," the office said, according to CNN. "The Office of Attending Physician supported this overall prudent individual choice by the members due to the unique requirements of members of Congress and their travel, professional work and frequent interaction with members of the public. The Office of Attending Physician is monitoring the health of these individuals, and at this time, 11 days post exposure, they remain in good health."


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