Donald and Melania Trump have tested positive for COVID-19, the president said in a tweet late Thursday.
“Tonight, @FLOTUS and I tested positive for COVID-19. We will begin our quarantine and recovery process immediately,” Trump tweeted. Tweeted the first lady: “We are feeling good and I have postponed all upcoming engagements.”
Earlier in the evening, the president revealed he and the first lady had entered quarantine after learning that top White House aide Hope Hicks tested positive for the virus.
White House physician Dr. Sean Conley said in a memorandum late Thursday that the president and first lady were “both well at this time, and they plan to remain at home within the White House during their convalescence.”
The doctor continued, “Rest assured I expect the president to continue carrying out his duties without disruption while recovering, and I will keep you updated on any further developments.”
The announcement of the president and first lady’s positive coronavirus test results came just hours after the revelation about Hicks’ results. The president indicated in an earlier tweet Thursday that he and the first lady had begun the quarantine process.
Hicks has accompanied Trump on several campaign trips in recent days, including to theon Tuesday evening and a campaign rally in Minnesota on Wednesday.
While the candidates tackled topics including race relations, climate change and the Supreme Court during Tuesday’s face-off, the coronavirus dominated much of the debate. Trump defended his decision to often appear in public without a facial covering, explaining that he wears a mask “when needed.”
“I think masks are OK,” Trump said, when asked by moderator Chris Wallace why he typically appears in public without wearing one. He pulled out a mask from his suit jacket to show he carried it with him.
“I put a mask on, you know, when I think I need it. Tonight is an example, everybody has had a test,” Trump said. “I wear a mask when needed. When needed, I wear masks.”
Judd Deere, a White House spokesperson, said the president “takes the health and safety of himself and everyone who works in support of him and the American people very seriously.”
“White House Operations collaborates with the physician to the president and the White House Military Office to ensure all plans and procedures incorporate current CDC guidance and best practices for limiting COVID-19 exposure to the greatest extent possible both on complex and when the president is traveling,” Deere continued in a statement sent to CNN.
Earlier this week, the world passed a grim milestone when Johns Hopkins University reported thatas a result of the novel coronavirus. That revelation came less than a week after the number of deaths linked to COVID-19 in the US surpassed 200,000.