County says 4 people tied to RNC in Charlotte tested positive for COVID-19

County says 4 people tied to RNC in Charlotte tested positive for COVID-19

CHARLOTTE — Mecklenburg County officials said Friday that four people connected to the Republican National Convention in uptown Charlotte Monday tested positive for COVID-19.

In a release, the county said approximately 792 COVID-19 tests were conducted for those attending or providing support to the RNC. Of those, two attendees and two people supporting the event tested positive for the virus.

The county has not said when they tested positive.

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According to the county, those four people were “immediately issued isolation instructions and any known close contacts were notified and issued quarantine instructions by Mecklenburg County Public Health.”

The county has not said if the four people who tested positive were symptomatic.

More information about the RNC event will be released in the county’s official After Action Report. It’s unclear when that report will be made available.

On Monday, hundreds of delegates filled the Convention Center, where President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence made surprise appearances and speeches.

On Tuesday evening, Mecklenburg County Health Director Gibbie Harris issued a statement regarding RNC COVID-19 test results, saying there were no known incidences where the public may have been potentially exposed by someone involved in the event.

Harris contacted the RNC during their event Monday to voice concerns about the lack of masks and social distancing on the floor of the Convention Center. Delegates had agreed to those measures in order to have the RNC in Charlotte.

Attendees were required to have a negative COVID-19 test before arriving in Charlotte and then they were re-tested on arrival. Testing was available all weekend.

RNC attendees were also supposed to observe “enhanced social distancing” for 14 days before traveling to the Queen City.

The RNC said it will be following up with attendees five, 14 and 21 days after the convention. The attendees also wore a Bluetooth device that kept track of everyone they came in contact with (who was also wearing the device) in order to ease the burden of local contact tracers.

On Friday, NC Democrats communications director Austin Cook released the following statement:

“Bringing hundreds of people together in our state during a pandemic was a slap to the face to the Charlotte community and all North Carolinians. This president has shown that even in the middle of a public health crisis, nothing is more important to him than a crowd -- even if it means risking lives.

“Last week’s Democratic National Convention was an example of how to convey our Party’s message of unity to voters without putting anyone’s health at risk. By contrast, for the Republicans to hold their convention in Charlotte was a reckless, short-sighted attempt to soothe Donald Trump’s ego, and it should call even more attention to the maskless crowds that gathered for Wednesday and Thursday night’s RNC events. Holding these gatherings is an enormous breach of public trust, and Trump and his Republican enablers must be held accountable at the ballot box.”

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