The White House shared a video with President Donald Trump on Twitter late Friday, before he was taken to Walter Reed Medical Center to receive treatment for COVID-19 symptoms. It was the president's first tweet since he announced both he and First Lady Melania Trump tested positive for the virus. In the video, Trump assured Americans he was doing "very well," as is the first lady. Trump later published a tweet thanking Americans for their support.
"I want to thank everyone for the tremendous support," Trump said in the brief video. "I'm going to Walter Reed hospital. I think I'm doing very well, but we're going to make sure things work out. The first lady is doing very well. So, thank you very much. I appreciate it. I will never forget it. Thank you." After Trump filmed the clip, he walked to a helicopter to take him from the White House to Walter Reed. He did not take questions from the media and did wear a face mask.
White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany confirmed Trump was showing "mild symptoms" of COVID-19 when announcing he would seek treatment at the hospital. He did not hand any of his presidential powers to Vice President Mike Pence and will continue working out of Walter Reed's presidential offices for the "next few days," McEnany said. White House physician Dr. Sean Colney said Trump was treated with an experimental antibody cocktail developed by biotech firm Regeneron.
Going welI, I think! Thank you to all. LOVE!!!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 3, 2020
Trump's positive test came at the end of a busy week for the president. On Saturday, he introduced his new Supreme Court nominee, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, in an outside ceremony at the White House. Barrett has tested negative, but officials told the Associated Press she had a mild case of the coronavirus earlier this year and has since recovered. Two Republican Senators, Thom Tillis of North Carolina and Mike Lee of Utah, attended the ceremony and tested positive Friday.
On Tuesday, Trump was in Cleveland for the first presidential debate with Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, who has also tested negative. On Thursday, Trump held a fundraiser in Bedminster, New Jersey. White House chief of staff Mark Meadows confirmed that the Trump camp learned aide Hope Hicks tested positive just as they got on Marine One to leave for New Jersey. Some staffers were pulled from the trip, but Trump went ahead with the event. When he returned to Washington, Trump shockingly tweeted he and Melania tested positive.
Since March, when the pandemic began, Trump had repeatedly tried to assure Americans that it would disappear and he continued to downplay it. He rarely wore masks in public and mocked Biden for wearing one so frequently during the debate. Biden has also regularly held campaign events with small, socially-distant crowds, in contrast to Trump's large rallies with thousands of supporters standing close together and some not wearing masks. Trump has now been forced to cancel campaign events, with just a month to go before the Nov. 3 election.