Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Florida) on Capitol Hill. Getty
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Florida) on Saturday said that he tested positive for coronavirus antibodies but does not currently have COVID-19.
An earlier Politico report on Saturday stated that Gaetz had informed several people on Capitol Hill that the top Trump ally in the House of Representatives had contracted the coronavirus.
Gaetz denied the report on Saturday, saying, “This story is false.”
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Rep. Matt Gaetz, a close ally of President Donald Trump, on Saturday said that he tested positive for coronavirus antibodies but does not currently have the live virus.
Gaetz took to Twitter on Saturday morning to refute an earlier report from Politico that stated that he had informed several people on Capitol Hill and the White House that he has contracted the coronavirus.
“This story is false,” he wrote. “I have the antibodies, not the virus.”
Washington Post reporter Colby Itkowitz on Saturday wrote that Gaetz corresponded with her about the antibodies, where he stated that he had “no clue” of when he had COVID-19.
“Texted with Rep. Matt Gaetz as one does on a Saturday morning, and he says he DOES NOT have covid, but that he tested positive for the antibodies,” she wrote on Twitter. “Said he has ‘no clue’ when he might have had it, but never had symptoms.”
Gaetz posted several Twitter updates later in the morning, criticizing Politico for releasing what he said was inaccurate information.
“Politico is trying to mislead ppl [people] into thinking I have a recent diagnosis for the virus,” he said. “Obviously, if I have antibodies I was exposed at some point, as many have been. I have no symptoms & am keeping my regular schedule. Was on Hannity last night and Steve Hilton tomorrow.”
When asked for further comment, Gaetz’s office pointed Insider to the existing tweets directed at Politico.
The conservative Florida congressman from the state’s Panhandle region was recently re-elected to his third term in the US House of Representatives. Gaetz is a close Trump ally and was a staunch defender of the president during his impeachment trial earlier this year.
In March, at the start of the coronavirus pandemic in the US, Gaetz went into self-quarantine after learning he’d come in contact with an individual who tested positive for the virus.
Gaetz was initially skeptical of the virus, wearing a gas mask on the House floor in what Democrats slammed as making light of COVID-19.
This story has been updated.
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