After test to enter politics, NJ Assembly Speaker has COVID-19

TRENTON — Two days after this week announcing a rigorous testing protocol for access to the state Assembly chamber, Assembly Speaker Craig J. Coughlin announced that he had been tested positive for COVID-19.

Anyone attending Monday’s voting session as well as a reorganization meeting on Tuesday is required to produce a negative COVID test, regardless of their vaccination status.

“I am experiencing very mild cold symptoms, but I feel fine and in good spirits,” Coughlin said in a written statement, adding “I remain extremely grateful that my symptoms are more than manageable, thanks to the science of vaccination and boosters, as well as the added precaution of wearing a mask.”

The Middlesex County Democrat would be self-isolating while participating in activities on both days remotely.

“It is for this very reason, in an effort to protect the health and safety of my fellow members, guests and all those involved in our proceedings, that our policy update was made last week. last,” he continued.

Under the updated policy, a negative rapid COVID-19 test taken after noon Saturday would be required of anyone planning to attend Monday or Tuesday meetings.

Members and staff should certify to their respective leaders that they have had a negative result.

A rapid testing site would be available at the Statehouse on Monday for Assembly members and staff who were unable to get tested beforehand.

The reorganization of the Assembly scheduled at the Trenton War Memorial for Tuesday is the session in which all 80 members are sworn in, including new members elected in November.

With previous reports by Michael Symons

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