A few minutes ago, Senator Rand Paul's office tweeted this:
Senator Rand Paul has tested positive for COVID-19. He is feeling fine and is in quarantine. He is asymptomatic and was tested out of an abundance of caution due to his extensive travel and events. He was not aware of any direct contact with any infected person.
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) March 22, 2020
So, a couple of things. First, it's good that he was tested and very good that he's quarantined. Lord knows how many vulnerable Senators he could have taken out with an intense debate about the stimulus package right now. Note that he was able to be tested without symptoms because of his position. How many more people are there out there without symptoms passing it around right now who HAVEN'T been tested?
Secondly, it's good that he isn't experiencing symptoms. If he does, I hope they're mild and he recovers rapidly. But let's not let him downplay the severity of this disease should he be one of those who doesn't have a serious case. This is a terrible virus and we have no idea what the long-term health implications are. I'm sure right wing media will use his lack of symptoms as an excuse to downplay it, so I'm going to contrast Rand Paul's current asymptomatic status with that of David Lat, founder of the Above the Law blog.
David Lat is on a ventilator in the hospital in critical condition. He tried to tweet what it was like to have the virus for as long as he could, but now he is struggling to survive. David Lat is 44 years old.
“He’s not doing great,” [Lat's husband] Shemtob said, adding that the NYU Langone doctors and other staff “are really attending to him. They’re taking it hour by hour, day by day.”
Lat, who is a Yale Law School graduate, a former federal prosecutor and the author of a legal-appeals-centered novel, is 44 years old.
Asked if the doctors had talked about or know Lat’s prognosis, Shemtob responded, “It’s a bit much for me right now.” He said it was not clear if any prognosis is even known.
“I just want folks to know that he is so strong; he is hanging in there, and we are praying he’ll recover,” Shemtob said. “Any thoughts or prayers people have are much appreciated.”
UPDATE: What a doofus. While he's waiting for results, he's doing this:
During the Senate GOP lunch today, Moran told colleagues that Rand was at the gym this morning, per two sources briefed on the lunch, and that he was swimming in the pool. Rand got his COVID-19 results back this morning.
— Seung Min Kim (@seungminkim) March 22, 2020
Being a doofus is, of course, genetic. Go ahead, Ron Paul. Tell us more about the "hoax" that's got your son in quarantine.