Rep. Michelle Steel is one of the first Korean-American women to serve in Congress
Rep. Michelle Steel has tested positive for Coronavirus after questioning the necessity for a mask mandate.
The Korean American revealed on Wednesday that she tested positive for the virus and is now quarantining.
“At the advice of the Attending Physician, and to protect the health of my colleagues, I will be quarantining,” Steel said.
The 65-year-old was sworn in on Sunday after winning the seat from Democratic incumbent Harley Rouda.
Along with Young Kim and Marilyn Strickland, Steel is one of the first Korean Americans to serve in Congress.
Steel said she is showing no symptoms and her deputy chief of staff and communications director Danielle Stewart said no additional information will be provided at this time.
“We’ve done the appropriate contact tracing. There’s a lot going on at the Capitol at the moment,” Stewart said, referring to the protests at the Capitol building on Wednesday.
“We’re just trying to make sure everyone stays safe.”
During her campaign, Steel drew support from the public who opposed mask mandates and regarded them as violation of their liberties.
Steel, who sat on the Orange County Board of Supervisors from 2015 to 2021, questioned the Orange County health officer’s decision to mandate face coverings.
In July, she changed her view to support face coverings as Covid-19 infection rates increased.
“This is of the utmost importance to protect your health and the health of others, so that we can return back to normal as quickly as possible,” she said at the time.
In other news, Strickland has made history by becoming the first person to be sworn into Congress while wearing a traditional Korean hanbok.