White House head of security is 'very ill' with coronavirus, report says

List of White House staff infected with coronavirus continues to grow 

Mayank Aggarwal@journomayank
Thursday 08 October 2020 08:34
US president Trump waves from the back of a car in a motorcade outside of Walter Reed Medical Centre in Bethesda, Maryland on 4 October 2020
US president Trump waves from the back of a car in a motorcade outside of Walter Reed Medical Centre in Bethesda, Maryland on 4 October 2020

One of the White House’s top security officials is said to be seriously ill with coronavirus and has been receiving treatment in hospital for several days.

Crede Bailey, who is in charge of the White House security office, first started to show symptoms even before the Rose Garden event on 26 September when Donald Trump announced his Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett, according to a Bloomberg report.

The White House is yet to comment publicly on Bailey’s condition or when he first tested positive for Covid-19, but four unnamed officials told Bloomberg he is now “gravely ill”.

The Rose Garden event last month has been highlighted as a potentially key moment when the virus may have spread to a number of top administration and military officials, with many attendants now confirmed as testing positive for Covid-19.

They include President Trump himself, who was treated in hospital over the weekend, and the First Lady Melania Trump. More than a dozen other top officials have tested positive, including the White House senior adviser Stephen Miller, former White House counsellor Kellyanne Conway, press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and adviser Hope Hicks.

Bailey, a career federal employee, runs the White House security office and works with the US Secret Service on security measures for Mr Trump’s protection. His office manages the credentials that give access to the White House and, in 2019, witnessed a controversy over security clearances given to Mr Trump’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, and son-in-law Jared Kushner.  

The news about Bailey comes within days of Mr Trump returning to the White House from hospital and ripping his mask off on the first floor balcony. Even before he left hospital, Mr Trump took a drive to see supporters outside the Walter Reed Medical Center – angering doctors who suggested he was putting his security staff and others at risk.

On Wednesday, Mr Trump said in a video message that his Covid-19 infection was a blessing in disguise “from God”, as he gained experience about the drugs used for treatment.  

Speaking with less than a month to go until the US election, Mr Trump touted an experimental treatment which he said was like a “cure”, and said he wants every American to get the same treatment as him.  

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