Coronavirus outbreak among Arkansas lawmakers grows to 9

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A coronavirus outbreak in the Arkansas Legislature has grown by two, pushing the number of lawmakers who have caught the disease in the past week and a half to nine.

A House spokeswoman said Tuesday that Reps Jeff Wardlaw (R) and Gayla McKenzie (R) tested positive for COVID-19.

Budget hearings that were halted last week because of the outbreak resumed on Tuesday, but with new social distancing measures in place.

McKenzie’s uncle is Gov. Asa Hutchinson, who has limited his public appearances after being exposed to someone with the virus.

McKenzie’s District 92 includes Gravette, Hiwasse, and parts of Bella Vista.

He has tested negative several times since then.

On Monday, it was announced an Arkansas state senator has tested positive for the coronavirus, marking the 7th virus case among lawmakers in the past week.

Sen. Cecile Bledsoe (R) of Rogers, Dist. 3

Sen. Cecile Bledsoe (R) of Rogers tested positive Sunday for the virus.

That’s according to Senate President Jim Hendren.

Bledsoe is the latest lawmaker to test positive in an outbreak that prompted a halt to budget hearings last week.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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