Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia’s wife has tested positive for COVID-19—becoming at least the 13th person who attended a largely mask-free White House Rose Garden event to contract the coronavirus.
Trish Scalia was seated next to Kellyanne Conway and right behind Melania Trump at the Sept. 26 ceremony to announce President Donald Trump’s nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Conway and the first lady also got infected with COVID-19, along with the president, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and two of her underlings, and Sens. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Thom Tillis (R-NC), along with several others.
In addition, members of Trump’s inner circle, like adviser Hope Hicks, who were not at the event but traveled to the Cleveland debate or rallies also tested positive in the White House outbreak.
The Labor Department said Secretary Scalia—whose father, the late Justice Antonin Scalia, was a mentor to Barrett—tested negative but will work from home. His wife “is experiencing mild symptoms but is doing well,” the statement said.
The Rose Garden ceremony was one of a number of White House events that flouted the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with unmasked guests seated closely together and milling about in close groups afterward.
President Trump revealed six days later that he and his wife had tested positive—although the White House has refused to say when he had last tested negative before that.
The next day he was flown to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center after his fever spiked and his blood oxygen level dropped, although his doctor initially claimed the admission was purely precautionary.
Trump received an experimental monoclonal antibody cocktail and a course of an experimental anti-viral—which he has repeatedly and wrongly referred to as a cure.
After being released from the hospital, Trump stood on the White House balcony and removed his mask so that he could pose for videos that portrayed him as a returning conquerer.