Live updates: President Trump tweets video message before trip to hospital

Oct 2, 2020, 6:04 AM | Updated: 5:18 pm
trump covid-19...
President Donald Trump waves to members of the media as he leaves the White House to go to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center after he tested positive for COVID-19, Friday, Oct. 2, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump both confirmed they have tested positive for COVID-19.

Follow live updates:

5:17pmNBC News reports that Sen. Lindsay Graham, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, has tested negative for the coronavirus. Graham says the the confirmation hearings for Judge Amy Coney Barrett will move forward as scheduled starting Oct. 12.

Coney Barrett previously had been diagnosed with COVID-19 over the summer, and successfully recovered from the illness. She is being tested daily.

5:06pm – With just a month to go until the election, President Donald Trump had a busy schedule in the week before the coronavirus hit home with him. Trump tweeted early Friday that he and first lady Melania Trump had tested positive for the coronavirus. The Associated Press put together the president’s timeline from last week.

4:19pm – The 25th Amendment provides some answers about how presidential power could be transferred, either temporarily or more permanently. Trump has not invoked the amendment in this case. In fact, the White House said he will continue to work from an office set up for him at the hospital. AP explains the amendment.

3:55pm – Just before taking off for Walter Reed hospital, President Trump addressed the country in a video he tweeted. In it, he said, “I think I’m doing very well, but we’re going to make sure things work out. The first lady is doing very well.”

3:35pm – President Trump has arrived at Walter Reed hospital.

3:21pm – Joe Biden’s campaign is taking down its attack ads in the wake of President Donald Trump’s coronavirus infection.

That’s according to a Biden campaign official who spoke on the condition of anonymity on Friday to discuss internal planning. Read more from the AP. 

3:09pm – CNN reports National Security Council staff are now required to wear masks in the White House common areas, and are asked to avoid unnecessary visits to the West Wing. This comes from an email send to the security staff on Friday.

3:02pm – Former President Barack Obama is extending his “best wishes” to President Donald Trump following his coronavirus diagnosis.

Obama said Friday that even during “big political battles” it’s important to remember that “we’re all Americans, and we’re all human beings.” Read more from AP.

He spoke during a virtual fundraiser with Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris.

2:51pm – The White House said the visit to Walter Reed was precautionary and that he would work from the hospital’s presidential suite, which is equipped to allow him to continue his official duties.

“President Trump remains in good spirts, has mild symptoms, and has been working throughout the day,” said press secretary Kayleigh McEnany. “Out of an abundance of caution, and at the recommendation of his physician and medical experts, the president will be working from the presidential offices at Walter Reed for the next few days.”

2:21pm – President Trump will go to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for more evaluation. He will reportedly work out of offices in the medical center for the next few days.

1:32pm – The rest of the first family, including the Trumps’ son Barron, who lives at the White House, have tested negative.

1:28pm – Kayleigh McEnany tweeted an update on the president and first lady’s condition on Friday:

He received an antibody cocktail and is taking zinc, vitamin D, melatonin, and aspirin. The White House says he’s fatigued. There are reports he also has a low-grade fever.

First Lady Melania is experiencing a mild cough and headache.

1:22pm – CNN reports at least three White House journalists have tested positive for COVID-19, according to the White House Correspondents Association

1:11pm – NBC News reports Speaker Nancy Pelosi has tested negative for COVID-19.

12:56pm – The White House does not appear to be making any changes to current virus protocol, even after President Donald Trump and the first lady tested positive for COVID-19.

A senior White House official said Friday that masks will still not be mandatory at the White House, describing facial coverings as “a personal choice,” despite overwhelming evidence that they help to stop the spread. Read more from AP.

12:25pm – NBC Politics reports Rudy Giuliani has tested negative for COVID-19.

12:08pm – People who attended recent Trump campaign rallies in both Minnesota and New Jersey are being urged to consider taking precautions, and if able, get tested for COVID-19. The president had held a rally in Duluth, Minnesota just two days before he tested positive for COVID-19.

11:31am – Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson issued a statement Friday, wishing the president and first lady a “speedy recovery.”

11:03amNBC News is reporting that President Trump’s campaign has now temporarily postponed a handful of its previously scheduled events, and is in the process making some of them virtual.

10:47am – Three more COVID-19 cases at the White House have now been reported, including two journalists and a White House staffer. They have yet to be identified.

10:21am – Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett — who was with the president at the White House last weekend — previously had been diagnosed with COVID-19 over the summer, and had successfully recovered from the illness. In her role as a SCOTUS nominee, she is being tested daily.

10:06am – After Trump’s schedule for Friday was scaled back to only include call on “COVID-19 support for vulnerable seniors,” that duty has now been handed off to Vice President Pence. A Trump campaign rally in Sanford, Florida was also canceled. The call on seniors was the only item on the president’s public schedule for the day.

9:49am – University of Notre Dame President Fr. John Jenkins has reportedly tested positive for COVID-19. Jenkins was in attendance at the president’s announcement of Amy Coney Barrett as his nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court.

9:25am – Joe Biden and his wife Jill have both tested negative for COVID-19. Biden reported the test results on Twitter, adding that he hopes “this serves as a reminder” to wear a mask, keep social distance, and wash your hands.

8:55am – Utah Senator Mike Lee announced that he has tested positive for COVID-19 on Friday as well, and will remain isolated for the next 10 days. Sen. Lee had visited with the president at the White House days ago.

8:28am – U.S. Attorney General William Barr has tested negative for COVID-19. Barr last saw the president in person last Saturday as part of the announcement of Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court.

7:42am – Washington Gov. Jay Inslee issued a statement Friday, wishing the president and first lady “a speedy recovery,” while pointing out that “the virus does not discriminate based on our politics.”

“We hope everyone will protect their health and the health of those around them, by doing what we know works. Mask up,” Inslee said on Twitter.

7:37am – Washington Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal spoke on the president’s positive COVID test Friday morning, noting how it shows that “no one is safe from COVID-19.”

“That’s exactly why we need Trump to stop playing down the threat,” she Tweeted. “It’s why we need to listen to the scientists and experts. It’s why we need a testing and tracing strategy with real resources. It’s why we need to keep schools closed until it’s safe.”

7:14am – President Trump and the first lady are reportedly experiencing “mild symptoms,” according to a report from the Associated Press.

6:28am – At this point, it’s unclear how this will effect the next presidential debate, initially set for Oct. 15 in Miami. Trump had also been scheduled to travel to and speak at several rallies across Florida, Wisconsin, and Arizona between Friday, Oct. 2 and Monday, Oct. 5. His schedule has since been scaled back, with only one event on his revised itinerary for the day: A phone call on “COVID-19 support to vulnerable seniors.”

6:01am – Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden issued a statement Friday morning, wishing the president and first lady “a swift recovery.”

Biden will also be tested for COVID Friday, having stood across from the president during Tuesday night’s debate in Cleveland. Over the 90-minute debate, the two men stood 10-feet apart, and eschewed with the traditional handshake typically seen at presidential debates.

5:22am – Vice President Mike Pence and his wife Karen both tested negative for COVID-19, as announced by his press secretary Devin O’Malley early Friday morning. Also testing negative: Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.


Trump tweeted at nearly 1 a.m. Friday, local time:

This came shortly after one of the president’s closest aides, Hope Hicks, tested positive. Hicks had traveled with the president throughout the week, including aboard Marine One, the presidential helicopter, and on Air Force One to a rally in Minnesota and to Tuesday’s presidential debate in Cleveland.

Trump is 74 years old, putting him squarely in an at-risk category for the virus. According to data from the Centers for Disease Control, people between the ages of 65-74 are five times more likely than someone between the ages of 18 and 29 years old to be hospitalized after contracting the virus, and 90 times more likely to see complications that eventually lead to death.

The president’s physician noted that he and the first lady are “both well at this time,” and “plan to remain at home within the White House during their convalescence.” He also noted that he expects the president to continue carrying out his regular duties “without disruption while recovering.”

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Live updates: President Trump tweets video message before trip to hospital