Covid risk as Donald Trump plans weekend rallies | World | News

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The President, who revealed he had tested positive on October 2, secured a statement from his White House physician Sean Conley clearing him to return to public activities. However, criticism of Dr Conley is continuing to grow, as he refuses to say when Mr Trump last tested negative. His clearance of the President comes after he initially said it would take until Monday to determine whether he was truly out of danger.

Mr Trump, 74, dismissed the virus again yesterday during a 30-minute phone call to Fox News. He said: “When you catch it, you get better.”

So far more than 7.6million Americans have tested positive for the disease, with 212,000 dying from it. On Thursday 56,000 new cases were reported, the most for two months.

Mr Trump said: “I think I’m going to try doing a rally on Saturday night if we have enough time to put it together. But we want to do a rally in Florida, probably in Florida on Saturday night.” 

He added he was considering a second rally in Pennsylvania on Sunday night but did not specify the location of either event. He said of his own illness that there was “no reason to test all the time” and “they found very little infection or virus”.

Twice in the interview he was heard coughing and at one point he apparently muted the phone line.

According to America’s Centres for Disease Control, people with mild to moderate cases of the virus “shed” it for around 10 days after symptoms start. 

But Mr Trump has sparked fury among some voters over his downplaying of the disease, including comparing it to the common flu, telling people to “live with it”.

His cavalier approach, less than a month before America goes to the polls on November 3, was attacked by his rival Joe Biden, 77, who said it had led to people not wearing masks.

Mr Trump has not been seen in person since returning to the White House on Monday. But sources close to him say he is growing increasingly frustrated by his lockdown as Mr Biden widens his backing in the polls.





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