"I hope this serves as a reminder: wear a mask, keep social distance, and wash your hands," the former vice president tweeted

By Adam Carlson
October 02, 2020 12:52 PM
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Former Vice President Joe Biden has tested negative for the novel coronavirus after President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump were infected earlier this week.

"I’m happy to report that Jill and I have tested negative for COVID," Biden tweeted Friday afternoon, referring to himself and former Second Lady Dr. Jill Biden.

"Thank you to everyone for your messages of concern," he wrote. "I hope this serves as a reminder: wear a mask, keep social distance, and wash your hands."

The Biden campaign had not initially answered questions on Friday about whether he would be tested.

Vice President Biden and President Trump debated one another in Cleveland on Tuesday night, in the first of what had been three scheduled face-offs ahead of the Nov. 3 election. And while neither wore masks, the candidates were more than six feet apart and did not shake hands.

Former Vice President Joe Biden
| Credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images

The Trumps' diagnosis, which was announced shortly after midnight on Friday, came hours after it was confirmed that senior White House adviser Hope Hicks was also infected.

Hicks' illness and the president's positive test touched off a wave of other tests, inside and outside the White House.

Vice President Mike Pence's spokesman said Friday that both he and Second Lady Karen Pence were negative. Ivanka Trump, the president's older daughter, also tested negative as did her husband, Jared Kushner, both of whom are senior advisers. (Even so, if someone is tested too early in the course of infection, it can result in a false negative.)

Barron Trump, the president and first lady's 14-year-old son, also tested negative and "all precautions are being taken to ensure he’s kept safe and healthy," the first lady's spokeswoman said Friday.

The White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows, told reporters on Friday that the president was having "mild symptoms" but was still at work.

He declined to discuss the president's treatment or how he was conducting his work while in quarantine.