This story will be updated.
In the early hours of Friday, Oct. 2, President Trump announced that he and first lady Melania Trump tested positive for the coronavirus. The president was treated during the day with an experimental “antibody cocktail,” the White House said, and taken by helicopter to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center early Friday evening. He returned to the White House at dusk on Monday and took off his mask as he faced cameras. In a video quickly released, he said of the virus: “Don’t let it dominate your lives.” The president will continue to receive care at the White House; he “may not be entirely out of the woods yet,” his physician cautioned on Monday. It is unclear exactly when Trump was first treated for covid-19.
At least eighteen other people have tested positive who have been in proximity to Trump, including the White House press secretary, the chief speechwriter, his personal assistant, the campaign manager, the head of the Republican National Committee and a bevy of others. The Joint Chiefs of staff are self-isolating after the second in command of the U.S. Coast Guard tested positive.
Key people with whom Trump had contact on Sept. 26 and after
former governor of New Jersey
White House press secretary
former senior adviser
senior policy adviser
White House chief of staff
Rudolph W. Giuliani
White House social media director
Fox News journalist
Donald Trump Jr.
senior adviser and daughter
senior adviser and son-in-law
former second lady
former VP and Democratic nominee
Senate candidate (R-Minn.)
WH assistant press secretary
Coast Guard admiral
WH assistant press secretary
director of Oval Office Operations
Barrett nomination announcement in Rose Garden
pastor Harvest Christian Fellowship
Rev. John I. Jenkins
president of Notre Dame
Amy Coney Barrett
Supreme Court nominee
William P. Barr
And at least three members of the press who cover the White House also have tested positive for the virus.
Over the last week, the president has debated Democratic nominee Joe Biden, held three rallies, participated in a dozen events and interacted with hundreds of supporters and donors.
Here’s a look at where Trump had been for the six days before Oct. 2.
Thursday, Oct. 1
The president had no public events on Thursday, Oct. 1. He did, however, travel to his Bedminster, N.J., golf club, where he spoke at a fundraising committee reception and participated in a roundtable with supporters. It was not immediately clear how many people gathered at either of the events. New Jersey state health officials said they were contacting more than 200 who attended the fundraiser, as well as staff at Trump’s facility.
White House aides were informed of close presidential adviser Hope Hicks’s positive result right before Trump’s helicopter took off for the trip, said White House chief of staff Mark Meadows on Friday, Oct. 2. Press secretary Kayleigh McEnany was then pulled from the trip. She continued to address reporters without a mask at a briefing on Sunday, Oct. 4. She announced her positive test results on Monday, Oct. 5.
Wednesday, Sept. 30
Trump spent the last day of September campaigning in Minnesota. Before leaving the White House, he spoke to reporters gathered on the South Lawn while not wearing a mask. He also took a photo with a man and a child. The child was wearing a mask.
The president then flew to Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, where he was greeted by several politicians, including Minnesota State Rep. Kurt Daudt (R). Trump attended a private fundraising event in Shorewood, Minn., then flew to Duluth for a campaign rally.
About 3,000 people attended the outdoor rally, according to local news reports. Photos from the event show that attendees were not distanced, and masks were not required. The president did not wear a mask at any point during the event, including while tossing Make America Great Again baseball caps into the crowd.
South Dakota Gov. Kristi L. Noem (R) attended the fundraiser but was not in close contact with the president, her spokeswoman said Friday. She is tested regularly and was negative on Tuesday.
It was not clear how many additional people attended the fundraiser, which was at a private home.
Tuesday, Sept. 29
Trump traveled to Cleveland on Tuesday, Sept. 29, to participate in the first debate of the 2020 election. He and first lady Melania Trump — both without masks — waved to a crowd that had gathered as they left the White House.
Neither the president, challenger former vice president Joe Biden nor moderator Chris Wallace wore masks, although several other precautions against the coronavirus were taken in advance of the 90-minute event.
In a statement to The Post, Cleveland Clinic said: “Everyone permitted inside the debate hall tested negative for COVID-19 prior to entry. Individuals traveling with both candidates, including the candidates themselves, had been tested and tested negative by their respective campaigns.” In other words, they were not tested by the clinic.
Reporters noted that all guests on Biden’s side of the debate hall wore masks. Roughly half of the audience on the president’s side — including all of his adult children — were spotted without masks, despite the stipulation that masks were required for all guests. The first family and other Trump guests reportedly declined masks that were offered by Cleveland Clinic doctors.
Frank Fahrenkopf, co-chair of the Commission on Presidential Debates, noted the first family initially wore masks inside.
Biden announced on Oct. 2 that he and his wife, Jill, both had tested negative. But no one from the White House or the Trump campaign contacted Biden or his team, the Biden campaign said; they learned from news reports about the president’s positive test result.
Monday, Sept. 28
At least six people were close to the president during an outdoor event celebrating Lordstown Motors’s 2021 Endurance on Sept. 28, including Rep. Michael R. Turner (R-Ohio), Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Lordstown Motors CEO Steve Burns and the president’s trade adviser Peter Navarro. None of the men wore a mask.
Lordstown Motors CEO Steve Burns. .
The president also held a news conference in the Rose Garden, where he spoke about the nation’s coronavirus testing strategy. He had a lectern separate from the other speakers, which included Vice President Pence and Brett P. Giroir, the federal health official overseeing testing. Before Giroir demonstrated how the new test works, the president quipped, “Good luck. Hope you don’t test positive.”
Sunday, Sept. 27
After a trip to Trump National Golf Club in the morning of Sept. 27, the president held a news conference in the White House briefing room and hosted a reception for Gold Star families in the evening. Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, McEnany and the president’s personal attorney Rudolph W. Giuliani were all on hand for the briefing, huddled close to one another. None of them wore a mask.
The president also did not wear a mask while speaking from the podium.
The reception for Gold Star families was closed to the press, but video and photos released by the White House showed a crowded East Room where people were not wearing masks or social distancing. Gen. Mark A. Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was on hand for the event, as were Pence and his wife, Karen. Also present was Adm. Charles W. Ray, the vice commandant of the Coast Guard, who first tested positive for the virus on Monday, Oct. 6. Members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff were isolating, the Pentagon announced.
Saturday, Sept. 26
The president’s Sept. 26 schedule was packed. He began the day with a closed meeting with Evangelical Faith leaders. It is not immediately clear how many people attended this meeting.
Roughly two hours later, Trump formally announced his pick to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court. About 150 people gathered for the Rose Garden event, including Judge Amy Coney Barrett, her husband and six children. Barrett and her family huddled with the president and first lady on the stage, posing for photos. No one on the stage was wearing a face covering.
(Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post).
Barrett tested positive for the coronavirus earlier this summer but has since recovered, according to a Washington Post report. As the Supreme Court nominee, she is now tested daily and most recently had a negative diagnosis for the virus on Friday morning, according to deputy White House press secretary Judd Deere.
Videos and photos of the event reveal that few attendees were wearing face coverings of any kind, and social distancing standards were not maintained.
Among the high-profile attendees were Attorney General William P. Barr, former White House adviser Conway, former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski and several Republican lawmakers — including Sen. Mike Lee (Utah), who has tested positive for the virus. Lee was seen hugging several other members of the audience, as was Christie.
Jenkins, the Notre Dame president who was on hand for the event and has since tested positive for the coronavirus, explained the apparent lack-of additional coronavirus precautions in a letter to students, faculty and staff: “When I arrived at the White House, a medical professional took me to an exam room to obtain a nasal swab for a rapid COVID-19 test. I was then directed to a room with others, all fully masked, until we were notified that we had all tested negative and were told that it was safe to remove our masks. We were then escorted to the Rose Garden, where I was seated with others who also had just been tested and received negative results.”
Trump also met with Barrett and her family privately in the Oval Office. Photos show that no one in the meeting — which included Pence, the first lady and the second lady — wore a mask.
At some point during the day, the president also filmed an outdoor interview with Fox News anchor Pete Hegseth. Neither man wore a mask.
Trump briefly spoke to reporters on the White House lawn before heading to a campaign rally in Middletown, Penn. Several members of the president’s staff — including Hicks and senior policy adviser Stephen Miller, who also has tested positive — traveled with him to the event.
More than 2,000 people attended the outdoor rally. Visual evidence shows many people were not wearing masks and social distancing was not enforced. Video shows the president walking close to the packed stands.