Shortly after 12:30 A.M. Friday on the East Coast, President Donald Trump abruptly revealed that he and First Lady Melania Trump had both tested positive for the Coronavirus. At this point, a lot of variables are up in the air — the initial course of the infection could take a week or more to play out, and in the aftermath of the initial infection, there’s also a documented chance for lingering health problems. The president, who is in his 70s, is in a high-risk group when it comes to potential Coronavirus complications. On Friday, ABC News reporter Jonathan Karl told the hosts of daytime talk show The View that Trump’s diagnosis has White House staff “really, really rattled.”
Doctors say it could be a week or more before the severity of the #coronavirus infection impacting President Trump and the First Lady is known since it takes time for the virus to run its course.
— Ana Cabrera (@AnaCabrera) October 2, 2020
The political ramifications of Trump’s illness could be significant if the virus takes a significant physical toll on the president, although at this point, White House chief of staff Mark Meadows claims that the president is experiencing only “mild’ symptoms. As Karl explained to The View:
‘There’s a real effort right now to try to portray this as business as usual. “The president is doing fine, and he’s going to work while he’s in self-isolation,” in fact, the chief of staff Mark Meadows — who has spent by the way, a lot of time, a lot of quality time with the president and with Hope Hicks — just came out of the West Wing, spoke to reporters… and was talking about the stock market and how great the economy, in his mind, is going, and how the president’s in good spirits.’
But that’s not the whole story, Karl explained. The positive test results for Donald and Melania came shortly after news broke that top Trump aide Hope Hicks, who works closely with the president, had herself tested positive. According to Karl, Hicks is now “quite sick.”
‘I’ve got to tell you that the ground truth of this is that the White House and the White House staff are really, really rattled. This is something that has really frankly freaked them out. They’re concerned about the president’s health. They’re concerned about Hope Hicks, who, by the way, I’m told is quite sick.’
As for the president’s own supposedly merely “mild” symptoms, Karl noted that there’s “a real question of exactly what you can believe in terms of how they’re characterizing this.” The White House is not exactly known as a credible source with Trump in charge. Check out Karl’s comments below: