Speaker Carl Heastie Misses Hochul’s State of State After COVID Test

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New York State Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie has tested positive for COVID-19, preventing him from attending Governor Hochul’s State of the State address on Wednesday.

Heastie, who is fully vaccinated and contracted coronavirus last March, said that he failed to pass a pair of virus tests before Gov. Hochul’s State of the State speech and would isolate at home in Albany.

“I underwent two rapid COVID-19 tests which did not come back clear,” Heastie, 54, said in a statement, adding that he was awaiting the result of a follow-up PCR test, which ultimately came back positive.

The Bronx representative, who received a booster shot, said he was not experiencing symptoms. He urged New Yorkers to take advantage of vaccines and tests.

Hochul delivered her first State of the State address to a largely empty Assembly Chamber as New York battles stratospheric COVID case numbers. The week-long statewide test positivity rate sat at 22% as of Tuesday, according to the governor’s office.

The governor began her speech on Wednesday by addressing Heastie.

“We do hope that Speaker of the Assembly Carl Heastie gets well soon,” Hochul said.

AJ Woodson

AJ Woodson is the Editor-In-Chief of Black Westchester and Co-Owner of Urban Soul Media Group, the parent company, Host & Producer of the People Before Politics Radio Show. AJ is a Father, Brother, An Author, Journalism Fellow (Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism), Hip-Hop Artist - one third of the legendary underground rap group JVC FORCE known for the single Strong Island, Radio Personality, Hip-Hop Historian, Documentarian, Activist, Criminal Justice Advocate and Freelance Journalist whose byline has appeared in several print publications and online sites including The Source, Vibe, the Village Voice, Upscale, Sonicnet.com, Launch.com, Rolling Out Newspaper, Daily Challenge Newspaper, Spiritual Minded Magazine, Word Up! Magazine, On The Go Magazine and several others.

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