Pence to Return to Work, Not in Quarantine, After Aide Tests Positive in White House Coronavirus Outbreak

Vice President Mike Pence is not in quarantine and intends to return to work at the White House on Monday, after one of his aides tested positive for coronavirus.

One day after President Donald Trump's valet tested positive for COVID-19, Pence's press secretary Katie Miller confirmed she also tested positive on Friday. The vice president's spokesperson, Devin M. O'Malley, told Newsweek Sunday that Pence "is not in quarantine" and "will continue to follow the advice of the White House Medical Unit."

"Additionally, Vice President Pence has tested negative every single day and plans to be at the White House tomorrow," he said.

Trump confirmed Miller had tested positive for the novel virus on Friday afternoon while speaking to reporters after a meeting with Republicans at the White House.

"She's a wonderful young woman, Katie," he said. "She tested very good for a long period of time, and then all of a sudden today she tested positive."

The president said he hadn't been in contact with Miller recently, but noted that Pence had. The vice president's team was "taking all of the necessary precautions" in light of the diagnosis, Trump said.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence listens as U.S. President Donald Trump meets with industry executives in the Cabinet Room of the White House April 27, 2020 in Washington, DC. Pool/Getty

Miller is now the third White House staff to test positive after Trump's valet contracted the new disease last week. Another member of Pence's staff was diagnosed after various states began implementing stay-at-home measures in March.

Trump had been in close contact with his valet as recently as Tuesday. However, White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley confirmed on Thursday that both the president and vice president have tested negative for the virus and remain in "great health."

The president added that all White House officials will be tested for COVID-19 following Miller's diagnosis.

White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany on Friday addressed safety concerns regarding visits to the Oval Office.

"We have put in place the guidelines that our experts have put forward to keep this building safe, which means contact tracing," she said during a press briefing. "All the recommended guidelines we have for businesses that have essential workers we are now putting in place here in the White House."

"As America reopens safely, the White House is continuing to operate safely," McEnany added.

Trump administration economic adviser Kevin Hassett said that it's "scary to go to work" in the West Wing during an appearance on CBS' Face the Nation on Sunday. Hassett asserted that social distancing and mask use should be maintained as states begin to reopen their economies because thousands of new cases are still emerging each day.

"I practice aggressive social distancing," he told host Margret Brennan. "I'll wear a mask when I feel it's necessary. It is scary to go to work. You know, I was not part of the White House in March. I think that I'd be a lot safer if I was sitting at home than I would be going to the West Wing."

"But, you know, it's the time when people have to step up and serve their country."