Trump’s doctor denies claims in new book that he had ‘series of mini strokes’

White House physician says president ‘fit to execute duties’ amid health speculation 

Gino Spocchia
Wednesday 02 September 2020 09:28
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Donald Trump’s doctor has denied claims made by an author that the US president suffered a series of mini-strokes last November.

The tell-all book, titled “Donald Trump v. The United States,” also claimed that vice president Mike Pence was placed on standby for a scenario in which president Trump was anaesthetized.

Its author, New York Times reporter Michael Schmidt, wrote that “word went out” in the West Wing about president Trump’s visit to the Walter Reed Medical centre last year.

Speaking to Fox News on Tuesday, Mr Pence said “I don’t recall being told to be on standby,” as he discussed what the president and his physician, Dr Sean Conley, called a routine health check.

In a statement, the doctor said Mr Trump was “fit to execute the duties of the presidency” amid widespread speculation that Mr Pence had been put on “standby” to take over.

“I can confirm that president Trump has not experienced nor been evaluated for a cerebrovascular accident (stroke), transient ischemic attack (mini stroke), or any acute cardiovascular emergencies, as have been incorrectly reported in the media,” continued Dr Conley.

“The president remains healthy and I have no concerns about his ability to maintain the rigorous schedule ahead of him,” he added.

The president, meanwhile, used Twitter to denounce online speculation from commentators including Joe Lockhart, who served as the White House press secretary to Bill Clinton.

“It never ends! Now they are trying to say that your favourite President, me, went to Walter Reed Medical Center, having suffered a series of mini-strokes,” wrote Mr Trump. “Never happened to THIS candidate – FAKE NEWS”.

Mr Lockhart, the former White House aide, had tweeted about Mr Trump on Monday following the release of Mr Schmidt’s book, asking: “Did Donald Trump have a stroke which he is hiding from the American public?”

Mr Trump, in another Twitter post late on Tuesday, said his visit to Walter Reed was to “complete” his annual health check-up.

That comes despite the president saying at the time that his visit was to begin his annual physical, which in the past had been taken some months later, leading to speculation about the cause of the visit.

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