WATCH: Pennsylvania House Republicans Hid Positive COVID-19 Test Results, Endangered Others, Says Brian Sims

Brian Sims, a Democrat in the Pennsylvania House, says that he just found out at least one Republican colleague was tested for COVID-19 and kept his illness from those he may have exposed, potentially allowing them to unknowingly expose others. Wednesday evening, Sims called on Republican leaders who kept the exposure a secret to resign.

Brian Sims coronavirus exposure
[Photo by Rachel Murray/Getty Images for ETAF]
Brian Sims first shared the information on Twitter Wednesday evening, expressing frustration and saying he’d go into more detail later on Facebook. He said that Republican legislators and leadership had been keeping illness secret from Democrats in the legislature, but sharing the information among themselves.

In a Facebook Live video, Sims gave additional information, saying that some Republican members had even quarantined, but not before spending time in the same room with colleagues. He says they shared information among their own party, but not with Dems. See the video (NSFW language warning)

LIVE: I never thought I’d see a day likeThis at work!

Posted by Brian Sims on Wednesday, 27 May 2020

Sims gave additional information about his own safety. He had recently donated a kidney, privately, to a person in his area who was dying of renal failure. That leaves him immunocompromised, and at additional risk from the coronavirus.

He’s calling for Mike Turzai, GOP House leadership, to resign for covering up illness in his party, despite doing contact tracing among Republicans.

Sims isn’t the only Democrat to call out his Republican colleagues in this matter. Representative Kevin Boyle also expressed disgust, saying that knowingly exposing people while keeping it a secret should be seen as criminal behavior.

At least one Republican member of the Pennsylvania House has admitted to keeping his illness secret. In his own Facebook Live video Representative Andrew Lewis says he felt he had the right to maintain privacy around his medical condition, and only told the people he had been seated nearest to during the days he exhibited symptoms.

COVID-19 Update

Posted by PA State Rep. Andrew Lewis on Wednesday, 27 May 2020

Sims particularly found the secrecy to be hypocritical, when the same members who privately shared testing and risk information with one another publicly minimized the risk of COVID-19 and fought to reopen the state.

Mike Turzai, along with other Republican representatives in his state, and many across the country, have continued to call for businesses to reopen and for life to return to normal. Along with Trump, GOP leadership has touted the number of tests done, and suggested that the curve has been flattened and it’s safe to get back to pre-COVID19 life. However, at least in this group of Pennsylvania legislature, there’s not even a willingness to protect those around them by warning of possible exposure.

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