US President Donald Trump and his wife Melania contracted the Coronavirus.
Trump and Melania began a quarantine after Hope Hicks, one of his closest aides, tested positive for the virus.
Hicks, the 31-year-old adviser to the president, is Trump’s closest aide to yet tested positive for the coronavirus.
She traveled with him on Air Force One to attend a TV debate in Ohio earlier this week.
Hicks was taken off Air Force One on Tuesday in Cleveland without a mask.
She was nearby in a Marine One presidential helicopter on Wednesday when the president held a rally in Minnesota.
Trump tweeted Thursday evening: “Hope Hicks, who was working hard without taking a small break, tested positive for Covid.” 19-. This is terrible!
“The first lady and I are waiting for our test results. Meanwhile, we will start the quarantine process!”
It is not clear how the quarantine will affect the arrangements for the second presidential debate, which is scheduled for October 15 in Miami, Florida.
During a phone call with “Fox News” host Sean Hannity Thursday evening, Trump said he and Mrs. Trump “spend a lot of time with Hope.”
“So we’ll see what happens,” the president said, adding that Mrs. Hicks often wore masks but was still injured.
The virus has infected more than 7.2 million Americans, killing more than 200,000 of them.
The White House tests his aides and anyone else in contact with the president daily.
Trump mostly refuses to wear masks, and is often pictured not committing to social distancing with his aides or others during his official commitments.
According to “Bloomberg News”, Hicks suffers from symptoms of the disease, and was isolated on Air Force One on the return flight from Minnesota.
Hicks is the latest White House aide to be infected with “Covid-19”. Vice President Mike Pence’s press secretary tested positive in May. She has recovered.
In the same month, a US Navy personnel who was working as one of Trump’s personal servants tested positive for the coronavirus.
But the White House said the president and vice president were unimpressed.
National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien, a number of Secret Service agents, a Navy pilot and a cafeteria worker at the White House were also tested positive.
Hicks was the campaign spokesperson during Trump’s candidacy before becoming White House communications director.
She resigned in March 2018 to become the chief communications officer for Rupert Murdoch Fox, before returning to the White House in February.
Who is Hope Hicks?
- I grew up in Greenwich, Connecticut
- She started modeling as a teenager and once appeared in an ad for Ralph Lauren
- She previously worked for a PR firm that handled Ivanka Trump’s fashion business and the Trump Organization real estate brand
- She joined the Trump Organization in 2014. Trump brought her to his campaign team a year later, despite her lack of political experience.
- Trump calls her “Hopster,” and she is said to be one of his most trusted aides and among the few who can challenge him to change his mind.