Huntsman cleared to campaign again after COVID-19 isolation

Former Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. speaks during a gubernatorial debate at the Silicon Slopes Tech Summit at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City on Friday, Jan. 31, 2020.

Former Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. speaks during a gubernatorial debate at the Silicon Slopes Tech Summit at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City on Friday, Jan. 31, 2020. | Laura Seitz, Deseret News

Candidate for governor ‘glad to be back on the campaign trail’

SALT LAKE CITY — Former Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. has been cleared by the Salt Lake County Health Department to resume campaigning in the upcoming GOP gubernatorial primary race after being in quarantine since June 6 because of COVID-19.

Huntsman, who is running to be elected for what would be a third term as governor against Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox, former Utah House Speaker Greg Hughes and former Utah GOP Chairman Thomas Wright, tested positive for the novel coronavirus on June 10, after initially being told he had tested negative.

He had already gone into quarantine four days earlier after members of his campaign staff tested positive, and has participated remotely in events including the final gubernatorial primary debate last week. Huntsman’s wife, Mary Kaye, tested positive June 18 and remains in isolation.

Now, the health department has determined Huntsman has “completed appropriate isolation for COVID-19 infection from June 6, 2020 to June 20, 2020. You are released from isolation and may return to work and resume your routine activities,” according to a letter dated Monday that was shared by the campaign.

“This virus has been a grueling ordeal – from the botched test to the sickness itself,” Huntsman said.

“While there are still some in my home who are sick and isolating, I’m feeling better and glad to be back on the campaign trail in the last week before the primary election. This is a critical election for our future and I urge all Republicans to mail in their ballots,” he said.

The primary is on June 30, but the election is being held almost entirely by mail due to the virus.

Lisa Riley Roche

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