Kamala Harris' 'View' Appearance Upended as Sunny and Ana Exit on-Air After Positive COVID Results

Co-hosts Sunny Hostin and Ana Navarro — both of whom are vaccinated — left the table during the episode as Vice President Harris' interview shifted to remote; a producer later said the women were tested again and were negative

It was touted as a "historic" moment on The View's "landmark" 25th season by Whoopi Goldberg — but the host didn't make it into the studio for the show's interview with Vice President Kamala Harris because, her co-host Joy Behar said, "Sciatica has whipped her out."

That was only the beginning of a chaotic Friday on the show.

After the first commercial break, there was some confusion on the set. Co-hosts Sunny Hostin and Ana Navarro were asked to leave their seats. Behar said an explanation would be forthcoming. When she asked if she could introduce the vice president, a producer told her to go back to break.

When they finally returned, Behar announced that Hostin and Navarro both tested positive for COVID-19.

While a producer subsequently told attendees the two co-hosts came back negative in another rapid test, that did not stop the unfolding commotion.

"No matter how hard we try, these things happen," Behar said on-camera after Hostin and Navarro left the table. "They probably had a breakthrough case and they'll be okay, I'm sure, because they're both vaccinated ... And the vice president is being prepped for her arrival. They cleaned the table, they washed the hands. Everybody is getting all cleaned up and she'll be out here in a second."

ANA NAVARRO sunny hostin the view test positive for COVID
Sunny Hostin (left), Ana Navarro on Friday's show. The View

After taking questions from the audience, a masked producer appeared on camera and said, "I have an update: Everything is just being done to be as safe as humanly possible so what we're going to try and do now is an interview with the vice president remotely."

"We're going to talk to her remotely? Behar asked.

"Even though she's here," the producer said before going to another break.

In what was supposed to be her first in-studio talk show interview since being sworn in as the country's first female vice president, Harris, 56, was invited to join the women to discuss topics including the COVID-19 pandemic, vaccines, misinformation, boosters and the impact of on women in the workforce, as well as issues surrounding Afghanistan, immigration and voting rights.

When PEOPLE editor Nigel Smith, who was in the audience, asked remaining hosts Behar and Sara Haines what was going through their mind, Haines replied, "What the heck is going on?"

"We got an adrenaline rush because we know that we have to think on our feet," Behar said. "I have many years of experience thinking on my feet. I was a standup comedian for many years."

"We're doing our best here," Behar added.

With only minutes left on the show, Harris did appear on screen but was not in the studio.

"Sunny and Ana are strong women and I know they're fine," Harris said from her remote location. "But it really also does speak to the fact that they're vaccinated, and vaccines make all the difference because otherwise we would be concerned about hospitalization and worse."

The appearance was Harris's sixth on The View. She visited the show in New York twice as a U.S. senator from California and did three remote interviews since the start of the pandemic, including as a vice presidential candidate in the final week before she and President Joe Biden were elected to office.

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