Less than a week after his vigorous launch into the New York City mayor’s race, Andrew Yang said on Tuesday that he was halting in-person events and quarantining because a campaign staffer had tested positive for the coronavirus.
Mr. Yang, the former presidential candidate, had been seemingly everywhere in recent days, meeting with elected officials across the city and riding the subway and bus to campaign events. His whirlwind appearances were in sharp contrast to the mostly virtual campaigns that his rivals have been conducting.
Now Mr. Yang will enter quarantine for at least eight days, his campaign said in a statement.
“This morning, we learned that a member of the campaign staff received a positive result on a rapid Covid test,” the statement said. “Since that time, Andrew has tested negative and is not experiencing any symptoms.”
On Monday, Mr. Yang attended an event at the Rev. Al Sharpton’s headquarters in Harlem to commemorate Martin Luther King Jr.’s Birthday. He spoke without a mask before a large crowd that included many of the other mayoral candidates.
The news is likely to raise questions about Mr. Yang’s decision to hold so many in-person events during a second wave of coronavirus cases in New York City. It will also force him off the campaign trail at a time when he had been grabbing attention for his frenetic schedule of public appearances and interviews with journalists.
Other mayoral candidates have had to quarantine recently: Scott Stringer, the city comptroller, and Maya Wiley, a former counsel to Mayor Bill de Blasio. Eric Adams, the Brooklyn borough president, has separately received criticism for holding in-person fund-raisers.
Jon Paul Lupo, an adviser to Ms. Wiley, alluded to the health risks of Mr. Yang’s in-person campaigning.
“Very much looking forward to folks who lauded Yang for in-person events (without mention of health risk) to now laud other campaigns that displayed more caution,” he wrote on Twitter.
Mr. Yang’s campaign said that he would conduct all activities remotely during his quarantine, and that it had started contact tracing to notify anyone who might have had contact with the staffer. The campaign requires staffers attending in-person events to get tested once a week.