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Trump news: President rips off his mask as soon as he arrives back at White House after walking out of hospital

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Donald Trump says he will visit supporters despite coronavirus infection

Donald Trump has been discharged from Walter Reed Medical Centre after his doctors declined to reveal key details about his condition and said he wasn't "out of the wood".

Trump didn’t respond to questions as he left the hospital, saying only “thank you” before ignoring a reporter asking how many White House staff were infected and if he was a super spreader of coronavirus.

On arriving at the White House, Trump took off his mask to salute and pose for photos in front of American flags as Marine One took flight.

The president's return to the White House came after he earlier told America not to be afraid of Covid-19 as the country's death toll climbed over 210,000 and the number of positive cases among the president's inner circle reached 16.

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and pastor Greg Laurie, who was at the Scotus Rose Garden event, were the two latest to announce a positive diagnosis on Monday.

As he prepared to end his 72-hour hospital stay, Trump began his morning furiously tweeting from his sick bed after attracting widespread condemnation over his “irresponsible” drive-by of supporters on Sunday evening.  

"RUDE!!!", the president called it. But the criticisms even came from within the president's circle, with Donald Trump Jr reported by Vanity Fair to want an intervention over the "crazy" motorcade stunt and tweet storm.

The Trump campaign, meanwhile, said their intention is for the president to make the second presidential debate on 15 October, which Joe Biden has also agreed, calling on the president listens to the science and make a nationwide mask rule.


Hello and welcome to The Independent’s rolling coverage of the Donald Trump administration. 

Gino Spocchia5 October 2020 08:21

Trump motorcade stunt labelled ‘irresponsible’ by Walter Reed physician

Donald Trump received widespread condemnation on Sunday following an “irresponsible” drive-by to wave to his supporters congregating outside the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, where he is receiving treatment after contracting the coronavirus.

Unable to resist the draw of the limelight even when ill, the president had the Secret Service don PPE to drive him outside of the facility’s grounds so that he could express his thanks to those who had gathered outside to pray for him and wish him well (believers in the disturbing QAnon conspiracy theory among their number).

Among those attacking the US president over the motorcade stunt was Dr James P Phillips, a physician at Walter Reed, who blamed him for endangering the lives of those who took part.

Here’s Justin Vallejo’s report.

Walter Reed doctor attacks Trump drive-by as ‘insanity’

Everyone in president’s vehicle must now quarantine, says Dr James Phillips. ‘They might get sick. They may die’

Joe Sommerlad5 October 2020 08:41

President claims to have ‘learned a lot about Covid’ in new video

Trump struck an optimistic tone in his latest address to his followers on social media last night, shot before the motorcade stunt.

“It’s been a very interesting journey. I learned a lot about Covid,” he said. "I learned it by really going to school. This is the real school. This isn't the 'let's read the books' school. 

"And I get it, and I understand it, and it's a very interesting thing, and I’m going to be letting you know about it."

Here’s Matt Mathers’ report.

Trump says he 'understands' coronavirus after weekend in hospital

His medical team say Trump could be discharged on Monday

Joe Sommerlad5 October 2020 09:05

Biden aide attacks Trump over ‘devastating’ supporter video

An adviser to Joe Biden has hit out at the president over his belated claim to understand coronavirus following his admission to hospital on Friday.

Antony Blinken, the Democratic presidential nominee’s adviser on foreign policy, said on Sunday that President Trump’s acknowledgement that he had "gone to school” on coronavirus by catching it, having spent months downplaying its seriousness, was not only ”devastating" but should have occurred “200k deaths ago, not when it affected you" - the figure an allusion to the number of US casualties so far.

Well said.

Joe Sommerlad5 October 2020 09:30

Questions raised over latest White House photo release

Trump’s staff have meanwhile released two new photos of the president “at work” in Walter Reed in a bid to encourage calm - but the second of these being merely a close-up of the first has only provoked further questions about the accuracy of the briefings being given on the 74-year-old’s condition. 

On Saturday, White House physician Dr Sean Conley gave a briefing in which he confused the timeline of when the president first tested positive and gave a far more upbeat assessment of his health than that given to pool reporters by Trump’s chief of staff Mark Meadows.

Here’s Oliver O’Connell on the pressure faced by the Walter Reed medicos to come clean with the American public in the face of pressure from the Trump campaign not to shatter the myth of his “strongman” persona with an election to fight.

Calls for honesty from Trump’s team of doctors

Despite revelations that the president’s blood oxygen levels dropped ‘rapidly’ and that he is taking dexamethasone, medics still say he could be discharged on Monday

Joe Sommerlad5 October 2020 09:55

Trump adviser roasted for insisting president ‘followed all the protocols’

Jason Miller, one of the few of the president’s inner circle still in good health, appeared on CNN last night to attempt to defend this administration’s messaging on the coronavirus.

Anchor Ana Cabrera refused to accept Miller’s contention that Trump had taken it seriously all along, insisting, rightly, that the president had disparaged masks and social distancing for months on end at his rallies.

Miller also appeared on ABC’s This Week yesterday to accuse Biden of wearing a mask as “a prop”, provoking a disdainful dismissal from Biden deputy campaign manager Kate Bedingfield.

Joe Sommerlad5 October 2020 10:20

Trump’s hospitalisation impedes campaign just when it needs October boost, officials warn

"Anytime the conversation is about coronavirus, it's not helpful for us," a senior administration aide has told The  Washington Post.

Good luck with that buddy. 

This race is going to be little else for the next month, whether Trump recovers quickly or not.

Trump’s hospitalisation impedes campaign just when it needs October boost

White House predicts president will be back on road in 10-14 days

Joe Sommerlad5 October 2020 10:40

Biden roars ahead in polls as election left in turmoil

In a new poll, conducted after the first presidential debate but before Trump’s Covid-19 announcement, the Democratic nominee extended his national lead by a two-to-one margin.

The candidate now leads the president by 14 points, 53 to 39 per cent, up from an eight-point pre-debate lead, according to a NBC News/Wall Street Journal survey of registered voters.

Here’s Justin Vallejo on what that all means for this most surprising of Octobers.

As Biden storms ahead in polls, what does Trump’s Covid-19 case mean for the election’s final stretch?

In a new poll, conducted after the first presidential debate but before Mr Trump’s Covid-19 announcement, Mr Biden extended his national lead over Mr Trump by a two-to-one margin

Joe Sommerlad5 October 2020 11:00

No one from Trump campaign reached out over Covid, says Biden adviser

Appearing on CNN’s State of the Union, senior adviser Symone Sanders was asked by Jake Tapper if anyone on the opposing side had “reached out to anyone on the Biden campaign about who may have been infected at the debate to ensure that everyone on your team takes the proper precautions”.

“No, we haven't heard, to my knowledge, from the Trump campaign or the White House,” she answered.

“But the reality is that Vice President Biden was not exposed. According to CDC guidance, you – less than six feet away is dangerous. Vice President Biden was always more than six feet away from President Trump.”

She also said that, as things stand, her candidate is still planning to take part in the second presidential debate on 15 October. 

Over to you Donald...

Andrew Naughtie has this report.

Biden adviser says White House has not reached out on Covid tracing as Trump team continue attacks on Twitter

Trump campaign claims Biden’s negative ads are still running and that media are deliberately overhyping president’s condition

Joe Sommerlad5 October 2020 11:20

President taking dexamethasone is ‘big red flag’ and shows his case may be severe, say doctors

While Trump himself has been offering further proof of his robust health by tweeting deliriously in all-caps early this morning…

…Dr John Torres, MSNBC’s medical correspondent, argued on Sunday: “The fact they start him on dexamethasone is to me a big red flag that there's a little bit more going on here then we’re hearing about."

Here’s Gino Spocchia on the ongoing problem of who to believe on Trump’s wellbeing.

Trump taking dexamethasone is 'a big red flag', say doctors

Medical correspondent says 'there's a little bit more going on here then we’re hearing about’ 

Joe Sommerlad5 October 2020 11:40

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