Did Anyone Actually Think Trump Wasn't Going To Get Tested For The Coronavirus?
Late on Friday night, White House physician Sean Conley sent out a letter explaining that although Trump had been within proximity of two people who tested positive for the Coronavirus at Mar-a-lago last weekend, he has not been tested for the coronavirus and does not need to be, because he has not yet manifested any symptoms. Previously, Trump has been in contact with at least three other people who have self-quarantined themselves after learning they were exposed to the virus.
Via The Hill:
"The President's exposure to the first individual was extremely limited (photograph, handshake), and though he spent more time in close proximity to the second case, all interactions occurred before any symptom onset," Conley wrote. "These interactions would be categorized as LOW risk for transmission per CDC guidelines, and as such, there is no indication for home quarantine at this time.
"Additionally, given the president himself remains without symptoms, testing for COVID-19 is not currently indicated," Conley continued, adding that he would continue to closely monitor Trump.
Trump was also seen shaking hands with various CEOs on Friday afternoon. One might put all of these things together and conclude that Trump did not think the coronavirus was such a big deal and/or thinks he is somehow impervious to it.
As Evan graciously recapped for us yesterday:
4:28: REPORTER: Please give us some science advice on whether Americans should travel domestically. Also again, you've been exposed, what the fuuuuuuck?
TRUMP: I did hundreds of pictures that night! And then I sat with Bolsonaro for two hours! I could have infected everyone! But I didn't because I am skeered the test will hurt, and also I am very healthy and can identify "camel."
DIFFERENT REPORTER: Dr. Fauci literally said if you stood next to somebody with coronavirus you need to be tested, but you're saying the White House doctor says something different? WTF?
TRUMP: People say I was in a picture, but I haven't seen the picture, NO CORONAS! People shouldn't just get tested because they want to, but probably I will get tested, I don't know.
And yet, this morning, Trump announced that he was tested for COVID-19 last night and that the White House is now taking appropriate precautions.
Via New York Times:
President Trump, wearing a "USA" baseball cap, held a news conference on Saturday in which announced that he had been tested for the coronavirus on Friday night, after which Vice President Mike Pence announced that the administration was extending its European travel ban to the United Kingdom and Ireland.[...]
The White House has begun checking the temperatures of anyone in close contact with Mr. Trump or Mr. Pence. White House staff checked the temperatures of everyone arriving at the news conference.
Of course he got tested. Please. That man has probably been tested for coronavirus every hour, every minute every day, and when he is not in the Rose Garden pawing all over various captains of industry, he is likely sitting in a bubble. Like John Travolta's bubble in the 1976 made-for-TV-classic "The Boy in the Plastic Bubble." Not only were did those CEOs have their temperatures checked yesterday, they were probably thrown into a tub of Lysol and disinfected prior to their visit.
You think he all of a sudden decided that he wanted to shake hands with eeeeeeeverybody on planet earth the moment a pandemic hit? Really? I mean, I am not a germaphobe, and I had a full-on breakdown yesterday when my forehead was a little hot, possibly because I'd been sitting out in the sun for hours.
It seems a lot more likely that Trump thought that not getting tested and going around shaking hands with half of the Western hemisphere made him look super macho, and then, when he realized (or when someone told him) that it just made him look super stupid, announced that he'd taken one after all.
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Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse