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First US Congress Member Tests Positive For COVID-19, Coronavirus Case Count Rises To 7,300

The Republican, Who Represents Part Of Miami, Follows Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, Who Announced That He Had Tested Positive For Coronavirus Last Week.

PTI | Updated on: 19 Mar 2020, 07:26:21 AM
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The United States so far has just over 7,300 positive cases. (Photo Credit: Photo For Representation)


A Florida lawmaker became the first member of the US Congress to test positive for the novel coronavirus on Wednesday. Representative Mario Diaz-Balart's office said in a statement that "just a short while ago, he was notified that he has tested positive for COVID-19."

The Republican, who represents part of Miami, follows Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, who announced that he had tested positive for coronavirus last week.

Diaz-Balart said that he had entered into quarantine and was working from his Washington apartment.

"I want everyone to know that I am feeling much better. However, it is important that everyone take this extremely seriously and follow CDC guidelines in order to avoid getting sick and mitigate the spread of this virus," he said.

The United States so far has just over 7,300 cases and more than 110 deaths, according to a Johns Hopkins University tracker.

Trump seeks massive direct payments to Americans totalling USD 500 billion

US President Donald Trump is seeking an unprecedented massive direct transfer of money to his countrymen to help them cope with the devastating impact that the deadly coronavirus is expected to have on the American economy.

The total volume of this direct transfer of money, likely to be in two instalments, is estimated at whooping USD 500 billion, which is one sixth of the Indian economy. If equally divided among the estimated 330 million American population, it comes to over USD 1500 (over Rs 1 lakh) per US citizen.

Trump told reporters at a White House news conference on Wednesday that no final decision has been taken yet, but multiple media reports said his administration has sent a proposal in this regard to the Congress.

As per the proposal, the direct cash transfer scheme to Americans is to be in two installments of USD 250 billion each -- one in early April and the other one in mid-May.

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First Published : 19 Mar 2020, 07:26:21 AM