A spokesperson for LaToya Cantrell’s office said the mayor’s team is working to “determine her COVID status.”

WASHINGTON — New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell was barred from meeting with President Joe Biden and Vice resident Kamala Harris on Friday after a White House screening COVID-19 test returned a positive result.

A spokesperson for Cantrell’s office said the mayor then took a follow-up PCR COVID-19 test at a Washington D.C. clinic which returned negative. 

“At no point did the Mayor display any symptoms, and she remains asymptomatic and in good spirits,” spokesperson LaTonya Norton said. “She will return home as scheduled this evening.”

Cantrell was among a small group of mayors and governors invited to meet with Biden on Friday. The group discussed the importance of funds for state and local governments to be included in the next round of stimulus and relief packages being considered by Congress.

Cantrell received her first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine on Wednesday. Norton said the vaccine can not cause a positive COVID-19 test as it does not contain any actual virus. 

“It takes time to build full immunity, and individuals are only considered to be fully immunized and 95% protected at 2 weeks after the second dose,” Norton said. “That is the reason that everyone needs to continue to wear masks, socially distance, and avoid large gatherings.”

Norton said Cantrell was disappointed that she was unable to meet with Biden but is confident the president will be a strong partner with New Orleans. 

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