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Utah gubernatorial candidate Jon Huntsman Jr. tests positive for COVID-19

Posted at 9:14 AM, Jun 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-11 00:40:07-04

Republican gubernatorial candidate Jon Huntsman Jr. has tested positive for COVID-19.

The former U.S. Ambassador (and former Utah governor) disclosed his positive diagnosis on Wednesday on Twitter.

"I was diagnosed this morning as positive for COVID-19. This is after a few days of uncertainty and test results that weren’t quite clear. But now it’s pretty clear," he said in a video statement shared with FOX 13.

Huntsman said he had begun to feel symptoms that he suspected were the coronavirus and the latest test results confirmed it. On Tuesday, Huntsman said the Salt Lake County Health Department gave him the wrong results on a first COVID-19 test. He took another test the same day.

"I’m thinking about a lot of families that are going through the same thing. They’ll get through it, they’ll endure and they’ll be stronger as a result. My thoughts are with them. I’ve seen it in my own family, the anxiety is very real," he said.

Huntsman also disclosed that six other campaign workers have tested positive. They are all now self-quarantining.

"They’re all doing well. They’re taking care of themselves, they’re in isolation. They’re all working remotely. They haven’t missed a beat. We won’t miss a beat," Huntsman said on the video.

Earlier this month, the Huntsman campaign disclosed a campaign staffer had tested positive for COVID-19. His lieutenant governor candidate, Provo Mayor Michelle Kaufusi, has not had to self-isolate as she was not around that particular staffer.

Huntsman said on the video he was viewing COVID-19 as a public health crisis, but also an economic and mental health crisis.

Hunstman is in a primary race with three others: Lt. Governor Spencer Cox, former House Speaker Greg Hughes and businessman Thomas Wright. Those candidates each offered their well wishes.

Huntsman's announcement came as Utah's Department of Health announced 305 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to 12,864 and a new fatality. The agency said a woman between 60 and 65 years old from Davis County died in the hospital from the virus.

Appearing on a town hall hosted by FOX 13, state epidemiologist Dr. Angela Dunn warned that as restrictions are loosened by the state, it is anticipated there would be an increased risk of COVID-19 spread.

"We’re going to be relying more and more on individuals to social distance, wear face coverings, stay home when you’re ill, and of course wash your hands as much as possible," she said.

Dr. Dunn answered FOX 13 viewer questions about the virus. Watch it here: