As he remains hospitalized at Walter Reed Medical Center after testing positive for the coronavirus, President Donald Trump is taking his diagnosis "seriously," according to his oldest son, Donald Trump Jr. Appearing on Fox News' Tucker Carlson Tonight Friday night, Trump Jr. spoke out about his father’s health, hitting back at criticism over his father's handling of the pandemic and claims that he is not treating the illness as seriously as it should be treated.
Noting that he had spoken to his father earlier that morning, Trump Jr. assured Carlson and the show's viewers that the president is "taking it seriously, but it's business with usual. I’m 42 years old. I don’t know that I've ever seen him sick with the flu or whatever. He's a fighter," he said, according to Deadline. Trump Jr. added that "it relates to running the free world, it’' business as usual. He's still working" and said that his father has "always been a worker."
Trump's response to the pandemic has long been in questions, with many reflecting after he confirmed his diagnosis on his multiple rallies held in recent months. Those rallies, oftentimes drawing hundreds if not thousands of supports, did not require face masks or social distancing, sparking backlash. Even amid his hospitalization, many have questioned the president’s response to his diagnosis, with fierce criticism having been sparked over the weekend after Trump on Sunday broke quarantine in order to take part in a short motorcade event, in which he waved to supporters from his vehicle.
At this time, it remains unclear just where and when Trump contracted the virus, though it has been suggested that a Sept. 26 White House event introducing Trump's Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett could have been a "super spreader event." Just days after the gathering of more than 150 people, Hope Hicks was confirmed to have tested positive, with both Trump and the first lady later confirming their own diagnoses.
Trump was then hospitalized on Friday, though there have been conflicting reports regarding his health. Just before Trump Jr.'s appearance on Tucker Carlson Tonight, CNN Chief White House Correspondent Jim Acosta reported that a presidential advisor told him "this is serious" and added that Trump "very tired, very fatigued, and having some trouble breathing." His son, however, hit back at those claims, telling Carlson his father was brought to the hospital "not for anything in particular other than an abundance of caution. He wasn't brought there — unlike what the conspiracy theorists say — for anything other than an abundance of caution."