New Jersey Gov. Murphy walks out of news conference after learning staffer positive for COVID

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Wednesday, October 21, 2020
2 staffers of Gov. Murphy test positive for COVID
Anthony Johnson has more on the governor having to self-isolate.

NEW JERSEY (WABC) -- Gov. Phil Murphy walked away from a news conference at Camden County Community College in New Jersey after a member of his senior staff recently tested positive for COVID-19.

Murphy tested negative Monday and got tested again Wednesday, which also came back negative for him and his wife Tammy Murphy, according to a statement from the governor's communications director.

"Per guidance from public health officials, the individual is currently quarantining at home," the statement read. "We have begun the contact tracing process to notify everyone who may have come into contact with our colleague during the potential infection window. Out of an abundance of caution and in line with the highest levels of commitment to protecting public health, the Governor and First Lady will be canceling their in-person events and voluntarily quarantining through the end of the weekend, and each will take an additional COVID-19 test before they resume any in-person engagements. The Governor received a coronavirus test on Monday as part of his regularly-scheduled testing regime, which came back negative. The Governor and First Lady were also tested this afternoon, which came back negative. From the beginning, the Governor's Office has taken every precaution to limit the spread of COVID-19. Today's exceedingly cautious steps are part of that ongoing commitment."

The staffer who tested positive was Mike Delamater, the deputy chief of staff for intergovernmental affairs.

Another person on Murphy's staff also tested positive Wednesday.

"This afternoon, Daniel Bryan, Senior Advisor to the Governor for Strategic Communications, tested positive for COVID-19," the governor's office said in a statement. "He took the test out of an abundance of caution and remains asymptomatic. The contact tracing process is underway, and anyone, including members of press, believed to have exposure as defined by CDC guidelines will be notified."

Murphy apologized for leaving Wednesday's briefing earlier than expected.

"I will now unfortunately have to take myself off the field," Murphy said. "I cannot ask President Trump not to come to Bedminster and have me sit here. I have no symptoms. Again, I tested negative on Monday, but i got to go take myself at least off the field and get tested again today. As you all know, if I was with someone Saturday night and got tested Sunday morning, that doesn't really tell you a lot," he said. "You've got to wait and see if there wasn't any incubating."

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