The news that President Trump tested positive for coronavirus has sent officials racing to find out who else he might
have come into contact with during a busy week of travel that included the first presidential debate in Cleveland, a rally in Minnesota, and a fundraiser in New Jersey.
But White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany, in an interview on Friday with Fox News’ Harris Faulkner, did not want to get into too many specifics.
“I’m not going to get into an exact timeline, but it’s safe to say the president took precautions,” said Ms McEnany, when asked when Mr Trump learned Hope Hicks, a close adviser, had first tested positive.
The president and first lady have both quarantined following their positive tests.
Tonight, @FLOTUS and I tested positive for COVID-19. We will begin our quarantine and recovery process immediately. We will get through this TOGETHER!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 2, 2020
Faulkner pressed Ms McEnany for more specifics as the conversation continued.
“Some concern today is that Hope Hicks had traveled to Cleveland, Ohio — and we don’t know if that’s where the original spread happened — but we say that because the president was with her, was closely with her and the First Lady, and in terms of notifying staff and journalists, people on the ground at that next event in Minnesota, they would have traveled together after she was known to have tested positive,” Faulkner said.
Ms McEnany responded she was “unaware of what was going on on Air Force One” but that contact tracing and necessary health procedures are being undertaken to assess the risk of the virus. Large portions of the senior Trump administration leadership traveled with Hicks in recent days, according to a list compiled by MSNBC.
Mr Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett also reportedly tested positive this summer, as did Notre Dame University president Fr John Jenkins and senator Mike Lee, who were both present at a White House event last week announcing M. Barrett’s nomination, where video showed numerous attendees including Mr Lee, not wearing masks and making close contact.
During Tuesday night’s debate, the president mocked former vice president Joe Biden for regularly wearing a mask.
Pres. Trump mocks Joe Biden on the issue of masks: "I don't wear masks like him. Every time you see him, he's got a mask. He could be speaking 200 feet away and he shows up with the biggest mask I've ever seen." https://t.co/5Bl4Ob3O2t #Debates2020 pic.twitter.com/OA3ffVcrkg
— ABC News (@ABC) September 30, 2020
Mr Biden announced he tested negative for coronavirus following the Trump diagnosis.