Conservative Leader Erin O'Toole tests positive for coronavirus

WATCH ABOVE (Sept. 8, 2020): Erin O'Toole unveils new Conservative shadow cabinet

Conservative Party Leader Erin O’Toole has tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

O’Toole, who became the party’s new leader in late August following a virtual leadership convention, is in self-isolation and is “feeling well,” according to a CPC statement released Friday night.

The statement also confirms that O’Toole’s wife and children have tested negative for COVID-19.

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Friday’s announcement comes a few days after the federal party leader went into self-isolation and was tested for the virus after possibly being exposed to it through a staffer.

A statement sent out on Wednesday said that an aide O’Toole was travelling with had tested positive for COVID-19.

The Conservative leader is the second federal party leader to test positive for the virus after Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet confirmed his diagnosis on Friday. A statement from Blanchet’s office said that he was doing “perfectly well” and would remain in isolation until at least Sept. 26.

Both Blanchet and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sent their best wishes to O’Toole in tweets Friday.

“I hope you get well soon, @ErinOToole,” wrote Trudeau. “Sophie and I are keeping you and your family in our thoughts — we’re wishing you a quick recovery.”

In a tweet Friday evening, Quebec Premier Francois Legault said he was also self-isolating and getting tested for COVID-19 following a meeting he had with O’Toole on Monday.

Legault most recently met with Ontario Premier Doug Ford, Alberta’s Premier Jason Kenney and Manitoba’s Brian Pallister on Friday to demand more federal health care funding and other big-ticket items in advance of next week’s throne speech.

Both Kenney and Pallister have not yet made statements on whether they would be getting tested or self-isolating.

In a statement Friday evening, a spokesperson for Ford said that he wouldn’t be getting tested as he didn’t “come into close contact” with Legault and that “they were masked except when seated and physically distanced at all times.”

Prior to his diagnosis, O’Toole criticized the federal government for not moving more quickly to approve rapid testing methods that are already in use in other countries.

Read more:
O’Toole family tested for COVID-19 under Commons program after long Ottawa lines stymie them

O’Toole and his family were tested on Thursday morning through a program for MPs after being turned away from another testing centre in Ottawa Wednesday following an hourslong wait.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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