Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday morning despite being fully vaccinated, department spokesperson Marsha Espinosa confirmed.
“Secretary Mayorkas tested positive this morning for the COVID-19 virus after taking a test as part of routine pre-travel protocols,” Espinosa said in a statement shared on Twitter. “Secretary Mayorkas is experiencing only mild congestion; he is fully vaccinated and will isolate and work at home per CDC protocols and medical advice.”
Secretary Mayorkas tested positive this morning for COVID-19 after taking a test as part of routine pre-travel protocols. He is experiencing only mild congestion; he is fully vaccinated and will isolate and work at home per CDC protocols and medical advice.
— Marsha (Catron) Espinosa (@MCatronDHS) October 19, 2021
Espinosa noted on Twitter that Mayorkas is currently experiencing mild symptoms and will work from home. She added in a follow-up tweet that “contract tracing is underway.”
Mayorkas attended a memorial service at the U.S. Capitol with President Joe Biden on Saturday. Images show the secretary standing next to the president and First Lady Jill Biden, though it is unclear where and how he contracted the virus.
The White House confirmed to the Daily Caller that no White House principal has been determined to be in close contact with Mayorkas. The most recent contact at the outdoor National Peace Officers’ Memorial Service took place outside of the 48-hour close contact window.
Mayorkas was scheduled to appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee for an oversight hearing Thursday. He was also expected to travel to Colombia later this week along with Secretary of State Antony Blinken, according to CNN.
Mayorkas is the latest Biden administration official to test positive for COVID-19 despite being fully vaccinated. State Department spokesman Ned Price announced he tested positive for a breakthrough case in late September. A number of lawmakers on Capitol Hill have also tested positive for the virus despite being fully vaccinated. (RELATED: Even With Breakthrough Cases, The Data Doesn’t Seem To Support Mask Mandates For Vaccinated People)
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that fully vaccinated people who test positive for COVID-19 are far less likely to experience severe symptoms compared to those who are unvaccinated. The agency also notes that unvaccinated people are six times more likely to test positive and 11 times more likely to die than their vaccinated counterparts.