Report: Pa. Sen. Mastriano tested positive for COVID-19 at White House meeting with Trump

By: - November 29, 2020 7:12 pm

A maskless state Sen. Doug Mastriano, R-Adams, before a meeting of the Senate Republican Policy Committee in Gettysburg, Pa., on Wednesday, 11/25/20 (screen capture)

A Republican lawmaker from south-central Pennsylvania who has been a leading opponent of the Wolf administration’s efforts to fight the COVID-19 pandemic “abruptly left” a White House meeting with President Donald Trump last week after being told he had tested positive for the disease, according to a published report.

Just hours after sitting shoulder to shoulder with fellow lawmakers for hours during a meeting in Gettysburg, state Sen. Doug Mastriano, R-Adams, was told he’d tested positive for the virus as he and other Republicans huddled with President Donald Trump to discuss Pennsylvania’s election results, according to the Associated Press, citing a source who spoke on condition of anonymity.

More from the Associated Press:

Trump told Mastriano that White House medical personnel would take care of him, his son and his son’s friend, who were also there for the Oval Office meeting and tested positive. The meeting continued after Mastriano and the others left, the person said.

The person spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the private session because the matter is politically sensitive.

… Everyone who will be in close proximity to the president must take a rapid test. Trump was himself hospitalized in October after he contracted the virus. Dozens of White House staffers and others close to the president have also tested positive, including the first lady and two of the president’s sons.

All participants in Wednesday’s meeting took COVID-19 tests, but the positive results were not announced until they were in the West Wing of the White House, the person said.

Members of the Senate Republican Policy Committee, joined by GOP colleagues from the state House, spent more than four hours taking testimony during a Thanksgiving Eve hearing about claims of impropriety in the Nov. 3 election. None of the witnesses, including Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani, presented actual evidence of fraud.

In photos, a maskless Mastriano can be seen speaking with fellow lawmakers during the meeting.

The source told the AP that Mastriano was joined at the meeting by his son and his son’s friend. It was not clear why the two were at the session, which also included White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, who also had tested positive for the virus earlier this year, the AP reported.

According to the AP, “the person with knowledge of the White House visit said several people rode in a large van from Gettysburg, where the policy committee met in a hotel, to the White House. Mastriano, his son and his son’s friend drove in another vehicle.”

Kate Flessner, a spokesperson for Senate Republicans, declined to comment, describing it as a personnel matter, the AP reported.

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John L. Micek

A three-decade veteran of the news business, John L. Micek is the Pennsylvania Capital-Star's former Editor-in-Chief.