President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump have confirmed that they both have been infected by the novel coronavirus. Reporting from the Associated Press confirms the tweet that the President issued early on Friday morning.
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
According to the Associated Press, the president’s physician reported that President Trump and the First Lady are “both well at this time,” and that they “plan to remain at home within the White House during their convalescence.”
The news comes on the heels of reports that Hope Hicks, a senior aide to the President, also tested positive for the virus after having traveled with the President several times in the last week.
As the news spreads across the globe, messages of support and solidarity are streaming in from world leaders. In a statement released by the Kremlin, Russian President Vladimir Putin offered his “sincere support in this difficult moment.” But the news also brought a fresh wave of skepticism and concern on an international scale. Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya, the Qatari- and Saudi-owned news channels, both ran special coverage of the announcement, the latter raising questions about the “prevailing state of uncertainty” in the United States. Iranian state television reported the news while featuring an “unflattering image of the U.S. president surrounded by what appeared to be giant coronaviruses.”
Meanwhile, U.S. and Asian markets fell this morning as the news of the President’s infection injected uncertainty into the markets. According to this morning’s market reports, Dow Jones dropped by 445 points or 1.6 percent, S&P 500 was down by 1.7 percent, and Nasdaq by 2.3 percent. The price of oil also fell by approximately three percent.
The president, who is 74 years old, is in a high-risk bracket for the disease.
In remarks to Traveling Press this morning, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo — who tested negative to the coronavirus — said that the White House is taking increased precautionary measures and getting “additional contract tracing on folks that have been to the White House.”
“We’ve just got to make sure we’re doing what the medical team says makes sense,” he said. “And then we want to make sure that we’re doing everything we need to do in Washington to make sure that we are covered down there as well.”