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Three days before Supreme Court is scheduled to start hearing cases, Justice Brett Kavanaugh has reportedly tested positive for the coronavirus, according to CNBC.
The 56 year old judge is not experiencing any negative symptoms and received a full vaccination back in January.
As a safety measure, Kavanaugh and his family will not be present during a ceremony in which new Justice Amy Coney Barrett is scheduled to take her oath on Friday.
Kavanaugh completed the ACLI Capital Challenge 3 Mile Team Race in Anacostia Park shortly before being notified of his positive test result.
The Supreme Court released a statement updating people on the test result, but did not disclose plans of whether the positive result will impact the start of the new term next week. After 19 months of hearing arguments virtually, all nine justices were scheduled to hear next week’s cases in person.
The court’s spokeswoman did not release any additional information other than the initial statement.
Justice Barrett is the youngest judge at age 49, while a majority of the justices are more at risk of complications from COVID-19, being in their 70s and 80s.
The entire roster of Supreme Court justices completed their vaccination doses last spring.
The justices have routinely been tested multiple times throughout the pandemic. On Monday, all of the justices tested negative, but by Thursday, while preparing for Barrett’s ceremony, Kavanaugh recorded a positive test, temporarily prohibiting him from future events.
Other members of Kavanaugh’s family were tested, and their results were all negative.
Read the full official statement released by the Supreme Court:
On Thursday, per the Court’s regular testing protocols, Justice Kavanaugh had a routine Covid test ahead of Justice Barrett’s investiture on Friday. On Thursday evening, Justice Kavanaugh was informed that he had tested positive for Covid-19. He has no symptoms and has been fully vaccinated since January. Per current Court testing protocols, all of the Justices were tested Monday morning prior to conference, and all tested negative, including Justice Kavanaugh. Justice Kavanaugh’s wife and daughters are also fully vaccinated, and they tested negative on Thursday. As a precaution, Justice and Mrs. Kavanaugh will not attend Justice Barrett’s investiture this morning.
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Justice Barret’s ceremony follows a recent decision not to block a vaccine mandate being enacted by Indiana University, after a group of students submitted an emergency request citing religious exemptions.
Eight students claimed that they had “a constitutional right to bodily integrity, autonomy, and of medical treatment choice in the context of a vaccination mandate” and took Indiana University to court over the issue.
Barret denied the request for a hearing without listening to a counterargument from the university or seeking counsel from her fellow appellate judges.
Indiana University’s mandate will require their 90,000 students 40,000 employees to be fully vaccinated before starting the semester. There is a zero tolerance policy for those that do not qualify for religious or medical exemptions. The university is planning to kick out the students that do not comply and fire the employees that refuse to receive the vaccination.
Masks are still being required to be worn by everyone while indoors, regardless if the person has been vaccinated. Those students or staff that are exempt must be tested twice a week under the new policy.