April 23, 2021

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Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine tests positive for coronavirus ahead of Trump visit

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine

John Minchillo | AP

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine tested positive for the coronavirus Thursday before he was scheduled to greet President Donald Trump upon his arrival in Cleveland, a statement from DeWine’s office said.

DeWine, a Republican, has no symptoms of the virus, but plans to quarantine at his home for the next two weeks, according to the statement.

The announcement came shortly after Trump left the White House to travel to Ohio, where he is set to speak about the economy and tour a Whirlpool manufacturing plant. Trump on the trip is also scheduled to participate in a roundtable event with his supporters and attend a fundraising committee reception in the evening.

“The President wishes Governor DeWine a speedy and full recovery and commends the job he’s doing for the great state of Ohio,” White House spokesman Judd Deere said in a statement to CNBC.

DeWine, 73, is the second governor to have tested positive for Covid-19. Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt of Oklahoma was diagnosed with the virus in mid July.

DeWine had postponed his Thursday briefing on the virus in order to attend Trump’s arrival, according to Cleveland.com. That briefing was reportedly postponed until Friday at 2 p.m.

Trump was slated to land at Burke Lakefront Airport in Cleveland at 1:05 p.m. ET, where DeWine had planned to greet him on the tarmac. DeWine was tested as part of the “standard protocol” for meeting with the president, according to the statement from the governor’s office.

His test, which apparently delivered results within hours, came back positive, DeWine’s office said. He will return to Columbus, the state’s capital, where he and his wife, first lady Fran DeWine, will be both tested, the statement said.

Ohio has been hit hard by the coronavirus. There have been 96,305 total confirmed and probable cases of Covid-19 in the state since the pandemic began, along with a total of 3,596 deaths, according to the Ohio Department of Health.

The coronavirus has infected more than 4.8 million people in the United States, killing more than 158,000, according to Johns Hopkins University.

This is breaking news. Please check back for updates.

— CNBC’s Christina Wilkie contributed to this report.

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