WASHINGTON (KETK) – East Texas congressman Louie Gohmert told KETK News in an interview Wednesday morning that he will isolate himself for the next 10 days after testing positive for the coronavirus.
Gohmert said that he was scheduled to travel with President Trump to West Texas and therefore had to be tested at the White House before he could board the plane. He was given a rapid test, which came back positive.
Officials at the White House then tested him a second time, which took nearly an hour. It also revealed a positive result. Gohmert said that he is asymptomatic as of Wednesday morning.
The eight-term congressman has been seen multiple times around Capitol Hill not wearing a mask since the pandemic began. However, Gohmert said that in the last week or two he was worn a mask more than he has in the past four months.
“I can’t help but wonder if by keeping a mask on and keeping it in place, if I might have put some… of the virus on the mask and breathed it in… But the reports of my demise are very premature.”Rep. Louie Gohmert
During a House Judiciary meeting on Tuesday, Democratic Chairman Jerry Nadler (NY) admonished many Republican members of the committee for taking off their masks. However, Gohmert was not one of those chastised.
He said that he has alerted people he was in close contact with over the past several days to get themselves tested.
Gohmert represents much of East Texas, where many counties are not enforcing Gov. Abbott’s mandatory face mask order with fines. Instead, counties have been mostly relying on public compliance.
Gohmert said that he still believes people can make decisions on their own about wearing a mask, saying: …”this used to be a free country.”
“If somebody feels strongly about everybody should wear a mask, then they shouldn’t be around people that don’t wear masks.”Rep. Gohmert
He then said that once someone tests positive for the coronavirus, they should have to wear a mask and that he would do so.