Lawmaker Gets Covid, Blames Maskless Colleagues in Riot Lockdown

(Bloomberg) -- U.S. Representative Bonnie Watson Coleman, a New Jersey Democrat and lung-cancer survivor, is seeking hospital treatment after testing positive for Covid-19.

Watson Coleman, 75, of Ewing, believes she was exposed after sheltering with several maskless colleagues during last week’s storming of the U.S. Capitol, according to a statement from her office. Watson Coleman, who on Twitter initially said she was resting at home, wrote four hours later that she was en route to medical treatment.

“While I feel OK, on my doctor’s advice I’m on my way to a local hospital for monoclonal antibody treatment,” she wrote on Twitter at 4:31 p.m. New York time. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration in November gave emergency-use approval to such substances for those “who are at high risk for progressing to severe Covid-19,” including those over 65 or with some medical conditions.

Watson Coleman said she received a positive rapid test Monday and was awaiting the results of PCR testing. She previously received the first dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine when it was made available to all Congress members.

Watson Coleman, the first Black woman to represent New Jersey in Congress, is serving her third term in the U.S. House.

Video taken during Wednesday’s attack shows Republican members of Congress spurning offers of masks, which rules require. They included Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, Andy Biggs of Arizona and Scott Perry of Pennsylvania.

The Capitol’s attending physician, Brian Monahan, said in a statement Sunday that members who had gathered in an unspecified isolation room should get tested.

“During this time, individuals may have been exposed to another occupant with coronavirus infection,” Monahan wrote.

(Updates with lawmaker heading to hospital in first paragraph. An earlier version of this story was corrected because of a typo in Pfizer’s name)