Trump blames 'military and law enforcement' for giving Hope Hicks coronavirus


But Trump and Hicks traveled and interacted with an extensive network of people after being exposed to the virus in the past week.

Donald Trump called into Sean Hannity's Fox News Channel show Thursday night to blame the military and law enforcement for exposing top aide Hope Hicks to coronavirus.

But according to reporting from CBS, Hicks tested positive for the virus sometime on Wednesday. So when he took to the airwaves, he was already aware that Hicks was positive, he had been exposed, and he and Hicks likely exposed an extensive network of others.

Despite this, Trump passed the buck and blamed 'military and law enforcement' for Hicks' exposure.

"It's very hard, when you're with soldiers, when you're with airmen, when you're with the Marines and the police officers, [you're] with them so much, and when they come over to you, it's very hard to say, 'Stay back, stay back,'" he told Hannity. "It's a tough kind of situation, it's a terrible thing."

Trump added that he'd just gotten tested and was unsure of the results. (Early Friday morning, Trump confirmed his own coronavirus diagnosis on Twitter, as well as Melania Trump's.)

"It's very, very hard when you are with people from the military or from law enforcement and they come over to you and they want to hug you and they want to kiss you, because we really have done a good job for 'em, and you get close and things happen," he said.

Trump explained to Hannity that Hicks wears "a lot of masks," but Hicks was photographed deplaning Air Force One without a mask Wednesday. She traveled with 20 to 30 aides and family members on Air Force One to Tuesday's presidential debate and Wednesday's rally in Minnesota.

Trump himself rarely wears a mask in public. All of his children were also spotted maskless at Tuesday night's debate despite Ohio mandates requiring masks in all indoor spaces that are not residences.

The secrecy surrounding Hope's symptoms and diagnosis has had wide-reaching repercussions. Trump shared a stage with Democratic candidate Joe Biden Tuesday nigh and reportedly attended maskless events Wednesday and Thursday where he was in close proximity with others.

Hicks traveled this week with Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, White House aide Stephen Miller, Deputy Chief of Staff for Communications Dan Scavino, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany, and others.

CNN election correspondent Sarah Mucha tweeted Friday that she was told there was "no contact from the Trump campaign or the White House" to alert Joe Biden's campaign of possible exposure.

Ronna McDaniel, chair of the Republican National Committee, tested positive on Wednesday. She was last spotted with Trump a week ago.

Many others exposed by Hicks or Trump in the past week have been tested, including Biden.

"Jill and I send our thoughts to President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump for a swift recovery. We will continue to pray for the health and safety of the president and his family," Biden tweeted early Friday.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.