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Three U.S. senators announced they had tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday even though they are fully vaccinated, bringing the total number of lawmakers in the upper chamber who have contracted the virus this month to four.
Sens. Angus King, I-Maine, Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and John Hickenlooper, D-Colo., all said they had tested positive and were isolating, in statements released by their offices. King said he tested positive Thursday morning in his home state, after he began to feel under the weather a day earlier.
“While I am not feeling great, I’m definitely feeling much better than I would have without the vaccine,” King said. “I am taking this diagnosis very seriously, quarantining myself at home and telling the few people I’ve been in contact with to get tested in order to limit any further spread.”
Wicker’s office said he also tested positive on Thursday morning, “after immediately seeking a test due to mild symptoms.”
“Senator Wicker is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, is in good health, and is being treated by his Tupelo-based physician,” the statement continued. “He is isolating, and everyone with whom Senator Wicker has come in close contact recently has been notified.”
Hickenlooper said he also tested positive after experiencing minor symptoms but was feeling “much better.”
“I’m grateful for the vaccine (and the scientists behind it) for limiting my symptoms and allowing us to continue our work for Colorado,” Hickenlooper said. “If you haven’t been vaccinated, don’t wait for the virus — get the shot today, and the booster when it’s available, too!”
On Aug. 2, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., announced he had tested positive for the virus after developing flulike symptoms, saying, “I am very glad I was vaccinated, because without vaccination, I am certain I would not feel as well as I do now.”
With many Americans still unvaccinated and the Delta variant breaking through among those who have received the shots, COVID-19 cases have been on a steady rise in the country since early July. The vast majority of hospitalizations and deaths from the disease in recent weeks have been among the unvaccinated, while those who have been immunized, like King, Wicker and Hickelooper, have generally experienced milder symptoms.
King urged people to “remain vigilant, follow the guidance from health professionals, and get vaccinated if you haven’t been.”
“While Maine people and Americans are ready to move past COVID-19 and return to our normal routines, the virus is not done with us yet,” King added. “We must all continue to look out for one another through our words and actions, and remain united against this dangerous disease.”
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