President Donald Trump pauses as he speaks during a news conference at the White House, Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

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President Donald Trump said he and first lady Melania Trump have tested positive for coronavirus.

In a tweet, Trump said, “We will begin our quarantine and recovery process immediately. We will get through this TOGETHER!”

Trump’s comments came after he confirmed that Hope Hicks, one his closest aides, had tested positive for the virus Thursday. Hicks began feeling mild symptoms during the plane ride home from a rally in Minnesota Wednesday evening, according to an administration official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to disclose private information. She was quarantined away from others on the plane and her diagnosis was confirmed Thursday, the person said.

Earlier, during a call-in interview with Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity, Trump said: “Whether we quarantine or whether we have it, I don’t know. I just went for a test and we’ll see what happens.”

It can take days for an infection to be detectable by a test, and it was unclear what Trump’s quarantine entailed. Minutes before his tweet, the White House distributed a schedule for Friday that showed he planned to go forward with a fundraiser at his Washington, D.C., hotel and a political rally in Sanford, Florida.

Several Minnesota Republicans met Trump at Minneapolis-St Paul International Airport Wednesday ahead of his rally in Duluth and a fundraiser in suburban Minneapolis. Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka had not been contacted by the White House “as far as I know,” spokeswoman Rachel Aplikowski said. House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt had not been contacted, a spokesman said.

Hicks, who serves as counselor to Trump, also traveled with Trump to the first presidential debate in Cleveland on Tuesday. She is the closest White House official to Trump to test positive for the virus so far.

The positive test is yet another reminder that the coronavirus continues to spread, even as Trump has tried desperately to suggest it no longer poses a danger. Since it emerged earlier this year, Trump, the White House and his campaign have played down the threat and refused to abide by basic public health guidelines — including those issued by his own administration — such as wearing masks in public and practicing social distancing. Instead, Trump has continued to hold campaign rallies that draw thousands of supporters. The virus has killed more than 200,000 Americans and infected more than 7 million nationwide.

The White House had not responded earlier to multiple questions about the last time Trump was tested and whether he and other staffers who spent time with Hicks in recent days will be asked to quarantine.

Trump traveled to New Jersey Thursday for a fundraiser despite concerns about Hicks’ health.

Trump is 74 years old, putting him at higher risk of serious complications from the virus. He said he expected to have the results back either Thursday night or Friday morning.

In a statement, White House spokesman Judd Deere 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 said.

Hicks traveled with the president multiple times this week, including aboard Marine One, the presidential helicopter, and on Air Force One to a rally in Minnesota Wednesday, and aboard Air Force One to Tuesday night’s first presidential debate in Cleveland.

Hicks is one of the president’s most trusted and longest-serving aides, having worked as spokesperson for his 2016 campaign. She originally served as White House as communications director, and re-joined the administration this year as an adviser ahead of the election. Her positive test was first reported by Bloomberg News on Thursday evening. She did not respond to a request for comment.

Multiple White House staffers have tested positive for the virus, including Katie Miller, Vice President Mike Pence’s press secretary, national security adviser Robert O’Brien, and one of the president’s personal valets. Kimberly Guilfoyle, who is dating Trump’s oldest son, Donald Trump Jr., tested positive in South Dakota before an Independence Day fireworks show at Mount Rushmore.

Still, Trump has consistently played down concerns about being personally vulnerable to contracting COVID-19. “I felt no vulnerability whatsoever,” he told reporters back in May.

After earlier positive cases close to the president, the White House instituted a daily testing regimen for the president’s senior aides. Anyone who will be in close proximity to the president or vice president is also tested every day, including reporters.

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that people who have been in close contact with someone with COVID-19 quarantine for 14 days, White House staffers are considered essential workers. CDC’s guidelines for exposed essential workers allows them to return to work if they take precautions, including taking their temperature before going into work, wearing a mask at all times and practicing social distancing.

Typically, according to the CDC, a person develops symptoms five days after being infected, but symptoms can appear as early as two days after infection or as late as 14 days after infection, and the time range can vary.



  1. The next presidential debate being October 15th, just clears his 14 day quarantine.
    Of-course President Donald Trump is way more sagacious than Netanyahu, and I have no-doubt shall dutifully observe his 14 day quarantine unlike Netanyahu whom upon his return from USA 2 weeks ago, totally disregarded all quarantine legal obligations which everyone else is mandated to follow when entering Israel.

  2. Testing positive is fairly meaningless since it appears that for every person who becomes seriously ill from Covid19, between 25-100 test positive without getting sick (many not realizing they were infected until someone checks for antibodies). The important question is whether President Trump is sick. At his age, if he becomes seriously ill it would create the possibility that Pence would become the candidate (something that would seriously undermine the Biden campaign which is running against Trump, rather than for Biden).

  3. The upcoming election just got interesting.
    I had been planning to sit it out, but if Trump will be alav haSholom or on a vent, I could see myself voting Republican.

  4. There are already RNC fundraising emails seeking sympathy contributions to the campaign to exploit FLATULENCE and FLOTUS testing positive. You never want anyone to get ill irrespective of their own negligent behavior but in this case, there are so many OTHER people around him who had no choice as to their exposure and were mocked when they wore masks. ALL should have a refuah shelamah and perhaps this might encourage a bit more adult behavior and compliance with the Administration’s own guidelines on masks, social distancing etc.

  5. Any o’ you medical experts care to explain how Trump could get Covid virus after he took that hydroxychloroquine? Not enough zinc? It will just disappear, maybe?

  6. No surprise. But he and his family are lucky, they get tested multiple times a week/day and have access to almost unlimited healthcare without charge, unlike most Americans.

  7. Anyone out there can test positive like Trump but so many don’t get tested like Trump. And being asymptomatic they wouldn’t know they’re carriers.