Bennie Thompson, Chairman of the Jan. 6 Panel, Tests Positive for the Coronavirus


Representative Bennie Thompson of Mississippi, the chairman of House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the United States Capitol, announced on Tuesday that he had tested positive for the coronavirus and will not appear in person at what could be the committee’s last hearing of the summer.

But the absence of Mr. Thompson, who said he would isolate for several days as he recovers from mild symptoms, is not expected to affect plans for a prime time hearing on Thursday. A committee spokesman, Tim Mulvey, said Mr. Thompson instructed the panel to move forward with its schedule after he tested positive on Monday.

“While Chairman Thompson is disappointed with his Covid diagnosis, he has instructed the select committee to proceed with Thursday evening’s hearing,” Mr. Mulvey said. “Committee members and staff wish the chairman a speedy recovery.”

It was not immediately clear whether Mr. Thompson would appear virtually, as lawmakers have for other congressional hearings since the start of the pandemic.

In a statement, Mr. Thompson said that he is fully vaccinated and boosted, and encouraged his constituents to receive the vaccine and take precautions against the coronavirus.

Because Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California has continued to extend proxy voting, a system first implemented at the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, he will be able to vote remotely on the House floor.

The next hearing, scheduled for 8 p.m. Thursday, could be the final session for the committee this summer. It is set to focus on former President Donald J. Trump and his 187 minutes of inaction as a mob of his supporters stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in an effort to stop the certification of Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s Electoral College victory.

Representatives Elaine Luria, Democrat of Virginia, and Adam Kinzinger, Republican of Illinois, are expected to take leading roles as the committee walks through an accounting of how Mr. Trump refused to call off his supporters, even as his staff, lawyers and family pleaded with him to step in and help stop the violence.



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