- The Washington Times
Sunday, August 2, 2020

Rep. Raul Grijalva, Arizona Democrat, was quick to point the finger at unmasked Republican lawmakers after testing positive for the novel coronavirus.

Mr. Grijalva, who chairs the House Natural Resources Committee, said Saturday he has self-quarantined after receiving his test results from the Capitol attending physician, adding that he currently had no symptoms and felt fine.

In fact, Mr. Grijalva felt good enough to blast Republicans that he said have refused to wear masks “to selfishly make a political statement.”

“While I cannot blame anyone directly for this, this week has shown that there are some Members of Congress who fail to take this crisis seriously,” said Mr. Grijalva in his press release. “Numerous Republican members routinely strut around the Capitol without a mask to selfishly make a political statement at the expense of their colleagues, staff, and their families.”

He mentioned no names, but Rep. Louis Gohmert, Texas Republican, was criticized for not wearing a mask after being diagnosed Wednesday with COVID-19.

Mr. Gohmert, who has also self-quarantined, speculated after his diagnosis that he may have contracted the virus by wearing a mask, given that “moving the mask around, getting it just right—I’m bound to have put some virus on the mask.”

“There are an awful lot of people that think it’s a great thing to do all the time,” Mr. Gohmert told KETK-TV. “But I can’t help but think if I hadn’t been wearing a mask so much in the last 10 days or so, I really wonder if I would’ve gotten it.”

Shortly after Mr. Gohmert’s diagnosis became public, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that masks would be mandatory in the halls and the House Chamber, extending the previous order requiring lawmakers to wear masks at committee hearings unless they are speaking.

“I’m pleased that Speaker Pelosi has mandated the use of masks at the Capitol to keep members and staff safe from those looking to score quick political points,” Mr. Grijalva said. “Stopping the spread of a deadly virus should not be a partisan issue.”

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