Two more Texas Democrats who fled to Washington in an attempt to block passage of Republican-sponsored voter restrictions have tested positive for Covid-19, the state House Democratic Caucus said Sunday.
The number of positive cases in the state House delegation is now five. Three were reported Saturday.
State Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer and in a statement Sunday he tested positive through a rapid antigen test. He said he had tested negative Friday and Saturday and that he was experiencing “extremely mild symptoms.”
Fischer is the only one of the two cases to come forward Sunday. Both had been fully vaccinated, the caucus said in a statement.
Of the three other positive cases in the delegation, only Rep. Celia Israel came forward to identify herself. All three were also said to be fully vaccinated.
The caucus said it will now provide daily rapid tests for its members and their staffers who are in the nation’s Capitol.
“All of the HDC Members who tested positive are feeling good, with no symptoms or only mild symptoms,” the caucus said.
The delegation fled en masse to Washington on July 12 in a move that will at least temporarily stop Texas legislation until the lawmakers return or the special session called by Gov. Greg Abbott ends.
“When my Texas House Democratic colleagues and I broke quorum to stop anti-voter legislation, we knew that tactic would come with real personal sacrifice,” Fischer said in Sunday’s statement.
Republicans, including Abbott, are trying to push through legislation that would add identification requirements for mail voting, ban some early voting options, create criminal penalties for breaking election codes and empower partisan poll watchers.
Abbott has threatened to arrest the Democratic lawmakers when they return.
On Saturday Symone Sanders, spokeswoman for Vice President Kamala Harris, said Harris was not at risk of exposure following a meeting with some members of the delegation because she had no “close contact” with the Texas lawmakers.
Gary Grumbach contributed.