The world was still processing the bombshell news on Friday morning that both Donald and Melania Trump tested positive for the coronavirus just hours after returning from a fundraiser at Trump’s Bedminster property in New Jersey. As critics spar over the potential ramifications of how Trump’s quarantine will impact the remaining 30 days until Election Day, more people close to the White House staff are expected to test positive as well in the wake of Hope Hicks revealing her COVID status on Wednesday.
News broke early Friday afternoon that several attendees of Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court nomination event in the Rose Garden last Saturday have now also tested positive for the virus Trump famously played down on purpose.
BREAKING: SCOTUS announcement attendee, Notre Dame President Reverend John Jenkins, who attended WH rose garden announcement on Saturday, tests #COVID19 positive now too. Like many others at #SCOTUS nom event, did not wear a mask and shook hands with many people. pic.twitter.com/Sm5gTSuHew
— Eric Feigl-Ding (@DrEricDing) October 2, 2020
While it was announced that Joe and Jill Biden, Kamala Harris and her husband, Douglas Emhoff, and Mike and Karen Pence are all negative for the virus, another member of the GOP had to announce the opposite.
Sen. Lee, who attended Saturday’s Rose Garden SCOTUS announcement (which was not socially distanced, few in masks), announces he has tested positive for the coronavirus. https://t.co/x59LMhCEra
— Philip Rucker (@PhilipRucker) October 2, 2020
The GOP’s insistence on not wearing masks at events, seemingly to appease Trump, is now having real consequences. Lee was caught on camera at that event displaying the exact opposite of the CDC’s guidelines for gatherings.
It has been widely suggested that everyone who has come into contact with Trump should quarantine for the suggested two-week period, but as of Friday afternoon, Mike Pence had not announced any plans to do so, although he is expected to remain at home over the weekend.
Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump have also been tested, with negative results, but as Kushner was photographed departing Marine One next to Hicks, he should continue to be tested every day as per the White House’s own guidelines.