Mike Pence’s chief of staff and a senior political advisor ‘test positive for coronavirus’
- Marc Short, Mike Pence’s chief of staff, tested positive for COVID-19 on Saturday
- Pence and his wife Karen both tested negative on Saturday
- News broke shortly after it was reported Pence’s political advisor was positive
- Marty Obst has also reportedly tested positive for COVID-19
- Obst, Pence’s senior political adviser, found out Wednesday he had the virus
- Neither Obst nor Pence have confirmed the news first reported by Bloomberg
Chief of staff Marc Short’s diagnosis was reported on Saturday night by Bloomberg.
It was confirmed by the White House.
‘Today, Marc Short, Chief of Staff to the Vice President, tested positive for COVID-19, began quarantine and assisting in the contact tracing process,’ said Devin O’Malley, Pence’s press secretary.
‘Vice President Pence and Mrs Pence both tested negative for COVID-19 today, and remain in good health.
‘While Vice President Pence is considered a close contact with Mr Short, in consultation with the White House Medical Unit, the Vice President will maintain his schedule in accordance with the CDC guidelines for essential personnel.’
From left: Marc Short, Mike Pence, Scott Walker and Pence adviser Marty Obst on October 7
Marty Obst, pictured in June with Mike Pence, has reportedly tested positive for COVID-19
Short is the second and Obst would be the third person in Pence’s inner circle to test positive, after his speechwriter Katie Miller became infected in May.
She returned to work three weeks later.
Obst has worked with Pence since 2016
A significant number of White House staff have fallen ill since a September 26 ‘super-spreader event’ at the Rose Garden, to announce Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court.
Among those to subsequently test positive were the president and first lady, their 14-year-old son Barron, press secretary Kayleigh McEnany plus several members of her team, Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien, and adviser Chris Christie.
It was unclear whether Short or Obst were suffering from any symptoms.
Obst first worked for Pence in the spring of 2016, during his re-election campaign for governor of Indiana.
When, in July 2016, Trump named Pence as his running mate, Obst became his campaign manager and director of operations.