President, First Lady and Hope Hicks test positive

President, First Lady and Hope Hicks test positive

President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump, shown at a Sept. 11 ceremony, revealed early Friday on Twitter that they are quarantining after testing positive. "We are feeling good," Melania Trump tweeted. (White House photo)

President Donald Trump has tested positive for coronavirus, along with First Lady Melania Trump, the first couple tweeted early Friday morning.

The president tweeted shortly after 1 a.m., only about two hours after he confirmed in another tweet a report by Bloomberg News that presidential adviser Hope Hicks had tested positive for Covid-19. Trump also said he and wife were awaiting their own test results.

Hicks had accompanied Trump and other senior advisers to Minnesota on Wednesday for a night rally in Duluth. They traveled together on Marine One to Joint Base Andrews and then on Air Force One. Hicks was shown on video Wednesday boarding Air Force One. She was accompanied by four male staffers; no one was wearing a mask. Hicks reportedly began experiencing symptoms on Wednesday, according to CNN. It is not clear why the president and first lady were not tested sooner. The White House has said that the president is tested daily. On Thursday Trump flew to New Jersey, where he attended a fundraiser and roundtable event at his golf club in Bedminster.

A few minutes after the president revealed that he and his wife had tested positive, the first lady said in a tweet: “We are feeling good.”

The news that the first couple have tested positive comes about 50 hours after Trump mocked former president Joe Biden, his Democratic opponent, at the first presidential debate for consistently wearing a mask in public.

“I don’t wear masks like him. Every time you see him, he’s got a mask,” Trump said Tuesday night in Cleveland, holding up a mask he had pulled out of his suit jacket. The president added that Biden “could be speaking 200 feet away” but “shows up with the biggest mask I’ve ever seen.”

The first lady and other family members wore masks as they walked into the debate venue but they removed their face coverings when seated. Everyone in the room was supposed to have been tested for Covid-19 in advance.

Trump has not been a fan of wearing a mask and has even accused people of doing so because they don’t like him. He first wore a mask in public during the pandemic on July 11, when he visited Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Washington, D.C. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advise everyone to wear a mask in public.

News of the Trumps’ and Hicks’ infections has undoubtedly shaken up the West Wing. Vice President Mike Pence met with Trump in the Oval Office on Tuesday. The president also met this week with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and other senior White House officials.

Since the pandemic began in the United States in February, the president has continually downplayed the seriousness of Covid-19. In phone conversations taped by Bob Woodward for his new book about the president, “Rage,” and revealed by the writer in September, the president admitted that he had deliberately downplayed the disease because he did not want the American public to panic. However, he referred to the coronavirus as “deadly stuff.”

It is not clear how Trump’s health will affect the two presidential debates scheduled before the Nov. 3 election –or his campaign.


About The Author

Regina Holmes

Contributing editor Regina Holmes has worked as a journalist for over 30 years. She was an assistant business editor at the Miami Herald and an assistant city editor at Newsday in New York City, where she helped supervise coverage of 9/11, anthrax attacks and the August 2003 Northeast Blackout. As an assistant managing editor of the Baltimore Examiner, she helped launch the free tabloid in 2006. Before joining Maryland Reporter, she was the managing editor for Washington, D.C.-based Talk Media News, where she supervised digital, radio and video production of news reports for over 400 radio stations. The Baltimore native is a graduate of Vassar College and Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

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