A GOP congressman from Michigan who has criticized Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s stay-at-home order announced on Monday that he’d tested positive for the coronavirus and urged people to follow public health guidelines.
Rep. Tim Walberg, 69, said he was experiencing mild symptoms of COVID-19 and after learning on Sunday that he’d tested positive for the illness.
“It has been more than a week since I have attended a public event. In conjunction with health officials, my office and I are in the process of reaching out to individuals I had contact with before my self-isolation began,” Walberg said in a statement.
“As we enter the winter months, I encourage everyone to remain vigilant and adhere to public health guidelines to combat this virus.”
Walberg was one of six GOP congressmen from Michigan to sign a letter this spring calling on Whitmer to amend her lockdown order instead of “needlessly shutting down large sectors of the economy and further restricting the lives of residents.”
Rep. Bill Huizenga, who also signed the letter, last month became the first lawmaker in Michigan’s congressional delegation to test positive for COVID-19, according to the Detroit Free Press.
On Monday, Illinois Rep. Cheri Bustos, a Democrat, also said that she caught the virus and would be self-isolating and working remotely from home.
“We must all continue to be vigilant in following public health best practices: wear a mask, practice social distancing, get your flu shot and wash your hands,” she said.
“The only way we will get this pandemic under control is by working together.”
In his statement, Walberg — who was re-elected to serve Michigan’s 7th District earlier this month — also praised health-care professionals and frontline workers amid the pandemic.
Their work has been “nothing short of heroic, and I continue to be grateful for their dedication,” he said.
Michigan reported 12,763 new COVID-19 cases and 55 fatalities from the virus on Monday, bringing its number of confirmed infections to 264,576 and the death toll to 8,049.
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