Everything Totally Fine, Just Fine, Says Trump's Extremely Shifty Physician
In a totally unhelpful press conference outside of Walter Reed Hospital this morning, Trump's physician Dr. Sean Conley said repeatedly that Trump was doing well and he was happy about how well he was doing while also repeatedly refusing to answer a number of specific questions. We probably learned more from what he didn't say than what he did say.
LIVE: White House Physician Dr. Sean Conley gives an update on President Trump's condition youtu.be
Most noticeably, he played a whole lot of word games with whether or not Trump had been on oxygen, and whenever someone asked if he had been on oxygen, he'd say "He's not on oxygen right now" or name another specific time and say that Trump wasn't on oxygen then. He refused to clearly state that Trump had not been on oxygen at all since he'd been diagnosed.
Dr. Conley was also not exactly straightforward about when Trump was actually diagnosed. At one point he said that the President was "just 72 hours into the diagnosis now," which would mean that he knew he had COVID-19 while attending a super fancy fundraiser for himself — a fundraiser that people paid up to $250,000 to attend. A fundraiser with a buffet, no less.
Hopefully they'll be handing out "I Spent $250,000 To Hang Out With Donald Trump And All I Got Was This Lousy Virus That Could Maybe Kill Me" t-shirts as consolation prizes.
It's also worth noting that Trump and his entire family were late to the debate in Ohio on Tuesday, meaning that they did not make it in time to be tested while there. Chris Wallace said that they were supposed to get themselves tested and that doing so was on the honor system — ie: they didn't have to actually prove anything. Thankfully, Joe and Jill Biden have tested negative, but the Trumps' irresponsibility put them at risk.
While Conley presented a positive outlook for Trump, an anonymous source "familiar with the matter" contradicted him and told reporters that, actually, things were actually a lot more serious than Conley had let on.
"At this time the team and I are extremely happy with the progress the president has made," Conley said. "Thursday he had a mild cough and some nasal congestion and fatigue. All of which are now resolving and improving."
But a source told reporters that there remains great concern about the president's condition.
"The president's vitals over the last 24 hours were very concerning and the next 48 hours will be critical in terms of his care," a person familiar with the matter told the White House pool, a small group of reporters who travel with the president on behalf of all the news outlets who cover the White House.
"We are still not on a clear path to a full recovery," the person said.
And a source told the AP that, actually, Trump was on supplemental oxygen on Friday.
BETHESDA, Md. (AP) — AP source: President Trump was administered supplemental oxygen at the White House on Friday before going to hospital.— Jonathan Lemire (@Jonathan Lemire)1601744240.0
It probably is a little understandable for Dr. Conley to be so shady in his reports on Trump's health — because he knows he'd be out of a job if Trump thought he made him look weak or said anything he didn't want him to say, publicly. Same with anyone in the White House, probably — which is why all of the actual information has to be disclosed through "anonymous sources" that the President and his supporters can claim don't really exist.
However! It's gonna be a little tough for them to do that this time, because here is a video of Mark Meadows, right after the press conference, asking to speak to reporters off the record.
UPDATE: Immediately after the press conference ended and before the anonymous statement was sent out, Mark Meadows… https://t.co/0FqChPOzGo— Olivia Nuzzi (@Olivia Nuzzi)1601742463.0
Trump is currently getting the best healthcare in the world. He's had antibody treatments and he's getting Redemsivir treatments. He's getting things that the people he could have infected might not have access to if they come down with the virus, because of how they are not the President of the United States. White House staff, people working the debate, the fundraiser, the Rose Garden Massacre. He didn't want to be careful, he didn't want to take these things seriously, and now their lives are at risk.
So that's nice.
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