President Donald Trump and Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden arrived in Nashville for the second and final presidential debate, which starts at 9 p.m. ET at Belmont University. Trump was accompanied by First Lady Melania Trump, making her first public appearance since she tested positive for the coronavirus earlier this month. The president also attended a fundraiser in downtown Nashville ahead of the debate.
The first lady was scheduled to make her first post-coronavirus diagnosis appearance during Trump's campaign rally in Erie, Pennsylvania on Tuesday. Melania did not accompany the president due to a lingering cough from COVID-19, her chief of staff, Stephanie Grisham said. Melania is feeling better "but with a lingering cough, and out of an abundance of caution, she will not be traveling today," Grisham said, reports the Associated Press.
Melania was last seen in public at the Sept. 29 debate in Cleveland. Two days later, Trump announced he and Melania tested positive for the virus. While the president was treated at Walter Reed Medical Center for three days, Melania remained at the White House and few details about her condition were shared publicly. It was not until Oct. 14 that she described her "personal experience" with the virus, which has killed over 200,000 Americans. Melania also revealed their son, 14-year-old Barron, tested positive but has since tested negative. Barron did not show symptoms of the virus.
"I am happy to report that I have tested negative and hope to resume my duties as soon as I can," Melania wrote in an Oct. 14 blog post. "Along with this good news, I want people to know that I understand just how fortunate my family is to have received the kind of care that we did. If you are sick, or if you have a loved one who is sick—I am thinking of you and will be thinking of you every day. I pray for our country and I pray for everyone who is grappling with COVID-19 and any other illnesses or challenges."
Air Force One arrived at Nashville International Airport at about 2 p.m. CT, reports The Tennessean. He visited Belmont's Curb Event Center at about 2:30 p.m., then went to the JW Marriott hotel in downtown for a fundraiser about a half-hour later. Biden's plane arrived in Nashville at 3:20 p.m., with both Biden and his wife, Jill Biden, wearing masks as they left their plane, while the Trumps did not.