Governor tests positive for virus

Dunleavy had been in quarantine since learning Sunday.

Gov. Mike Dunleavy speaks at an Anchorage news conference on Dec. 11, 2020. (Courtesy photo / Office of Gov. Mike Dunleavy)

Gov. Mike Dunleavy speaks at an Anchorage news conference on Dec. 11, 2020. (Courtesy photo / Office of Gov. Mike Dunleavy)

By BECKY BOHRER

Associated Press

JUNEAU — Gov. Mike Dunleavy tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday and was at his home near Wasilla with mild symptoms, his office said.

Dunleavy “is still acting in his capacity as the state’s chief executive and will work from home just as he has been since he entered self-quarantine on Sunday,” spokesperson Jeff Turner said by email.

Dunleavy, 59, had been in quarantine since learning Sunday he had been identified as a close contact to someone who had tested positive for COVID-19, his office said. At the time, he felt well and tested negative, and he continued to feel well until Tuesday night, his office said.

He was tested Wednesday, and the results came back positive, a release from his office said.

Dr. Anne Zink, the state’s chief medical officer, during a briefing with reporters did not say if Dunleavy’s wife had been tested, and Turner said he did not have that information. Zink also did not answer a question about the circumstances surrounding Dunleavy’s exposure. His office said previously that he was told he had been in close contact on Saturday with a person who was later found to be positive for COVID-19.

Zink did say that because Dunleavy went into quarantine when he did there were “no known exposures to him being positive.” She said Dunleavy is doing well overall, with mild symptoms. She did not specify those symptoms.

Zink and the governor’s attending physician are monitoring him and will provide the public with updates “as needed,” Dunleavy’s office said.

At least nine governors around the country have tested positive for COVID-19.

In a press release Wednesday, Alaska State House Speaker Louise Stutes, R-Kodiak, wished Dunleavy a speedy recovery.

“I encourage Alaskans to join me in praying for Governor Mike Dunleavy to experience a quick and full recovery from COVID-19,” Stutes said. “We are nearing a new chapter where vaccines will allow us to get back to normal, but this diagnosis is a tragic reminder that the pandemic is not yet over.”

Dunleavy toured the Seward Highway Silvertip Maintenance Station with Sen. Peter Micciche (R-Soldotna) on Friday, Daniel McDonald, communications director for the Alaska Senate Majority, said in a Wednesday email. Micciche tested negative for COVID-19 on Tuesday, McDonald said.

Alaska House Republicans Communications Director Ben Dietderich confirmed Wednesday night that all House action on Thursday was canceled after confirmation that a state representative tested positive for COVID-19.

Peninsula Clarion staff contributed to this report.

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