USA: Several of the Texas Democrats who fled the state capital to avoid voting on an election integrity bill have tested positive for the coronavirus.
Three of the 60 Texas House Democrats tested positive for the virus while staying in Washington, D.C., according to Texas House Democratic Caucus leadership.
One of the members found out about their positive test late on Friday evening but did not have symptoms, officials say. All House members were notified of the positive tests and were all tested themselves immediately.
The caucus says that the two other members found out about their positive test on Saturday.
The members who tested positive will be forced to isolate themselves for 10 days.
Earlier this week, the Democratic lawmakers fled to the nation’s capital to avoid participating in a quorum vote on a Republican proposed bill aimed at strengthening voter ID requirements for mail-in ballots. The bill also bans drive-thru and overnight early voting.
The news received immediate criticism from conservatives on Twitter with some of them sarcastically pointing out that the lawmakers had been photographed travelling on an airplane to D.C. without masks.
“Saw a photo of a lot of them on a plane and none were wearing masks,” The Federalist commentary writer Eddie Scarry tweeted. “Had me worried about how many people they might infect. I don’t know why they were so careless, with all these new variants. Should just follow the science.”
“Laws — like masking on a plane — exist for a reason,” Washington Free Beacon reporter Joe Simonson tweeted. “Very disturbed by this reckless behavior, which happened in the process of subverting democracy. Everyone remember the day July 12.”
“SUPER SPREADERS!!!!!” conservative activist Ned Ryun tweeted.
“This would be called a super spreader event if it was Republicans who got COVID after not wearing masks on a plane,” journalist Josh Jordan tweeted. “Science for thee, not for me.”
The Texas Democrats who fled to Washington, D.C. took a different approach to traveling during a pandemic just ten months ago.
In response to a Maine wedding “superspreader,” Rep. Donna Howard tweeted, “Personal freedom? ‘spread of the virus beyond those who attended the wedding, killing people unrelated to the gathering, is an indication of how virulent the disease can be and how far-reaching the effects can be.”
Another Texas Democrat who traveled to Washington, D.C., Rep. Vikki Goodwin, tweeted her opposition to Texas lifting its statewide mask mandate in March.
#LetThePeopleVote Democracy is too important to sit back and watch the Republicans cram down a bad elections bill. We’re heading to DC to ask our Congress to act on the For The People Act. #TXDemStrong
A third Democrat who made the journey to Washington lamented the fact that masks were no longer required in Texas a few months ago.
“No more masks or restrictions, but Texas has the worst uninsured rate in the country, a growing physician shortage, and leads the nation in rural hospital closures,” Texas State Rep. John Bucy III tweeted.
Last August, Democratic Texas State Rep. Chris Turner, publicly slammed former President Donald Trump and Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick for their handling of the coronavirus pandemic. Turner was one of the lawmakers who made the trip to Washington, D.C.
Fox News’ Dejaris Holt contributed to this article.
By Andrew Mark Miller