Congressman Clyburn tests positive for COVID-19 in breakthrough case

“I am asymptomatic,” Clyburn shared on Twitter, urging Americans to get vaccinated and boosted. "No one is immune."

Fully vaccinated House Majority Whip James Clyburn announced on Twitter Wednesday that he tested positive for COVID-19.

“This is a breakthrough case, and I am asymptomatic,” the South Carolina congressman shared in a statement. 

“America is in a new phase of this pandemic. No one is immune,” Clyburn wrote. “I urge anyone who has not done so to protect themselves by getting vaccinated and boosted.”

South Carolina Rep. James E. Clyburn, chairman of the House Coronavirus Subcommittee, speaks during a hearing last month held to discuss the monetization and misinformation surrounding COVID-19. (Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

Clyburn is not the only lawmaker to test positive for COVID-19 in recent days. As reported by CBS News, Representatives Jason Crow of Colorado, Nicole Malliotakis of New York and Matt Cartwright of Pennsylvania have also contracted the potentially deadly virus. Additionally, Illinois Rep. Jan Schakowsky, California Rep. Barbara Lee, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker all announced their positive test results this week.

Each is said to be vaccinated.

Clyburn’s announcement sparked debate in the comments of his Twitter post about so-called “breakthrough” cases and the efficacy of the vaccine.

One user wrote, “Can we please stop with the ‘breakthrough’. The term break through, at this point, is about as legitimate as the term ‘vaccine’ when speaking of this treatment. The shots are prophylactics, not vaccines. A vaccine prevents you from getting sick. Measles would be a good example.” Another commented: “The vaccine is very effective in preventing infection, but it not 100% and certainly not with omicron. But it is highly effective against hospitalization and death.”

A third noted, “Did he just say he was vaccinated and still caught covid? How does that translate to folks needing to run and also take a trial vaccine that does not prevent you from catching/spreading covid? Make It Make Sense.” “Glad you are vaccinated and boosted,” someone added. “Nope, no one is immune to getting this virus. The vaccines help make sure you don’t die from it.”

Several commenters shared positive and hopeful messages for the senator and his colleagues, with one Twitter user writing, “@WhipClyburn we all hold you in our hearts and pray for your rapid healing, along with @RepBarbaraLee, @CoryBooker @SenWarren, and everyone out there fighting for us and against this horrible virus. We wish you peace, rest, and recovery.”

Meanwhile, President Joe Biden’s chief medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said Tuesday on CBS Mornings that it’s “entirely conceivable and likely” that once enough people are vaccinated, the nation will no longer be stifled by the coronavirus. 

“We are not going to be in a situation of this degree of intensity indefinitely, for sure,” Dr. Fauci said. “We are hoping when we get through this Omicron wave that we will have enough people vaccinated and/or having been infected and recovered well that there will be a degree of immunity in the community, such as that you don’t have a situation where it is dominating your life. We hope we get there soon.”

Apparently, for the virus to no longer be a triggering topic in the country, he asserted, “we first have to get to the 50 million or so people who are eligible to be vaccinated who are not vaccinated.”

According to reports, about 65% of eligible Americans — more than 204 million — are fully vaccinated.

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