Trump cleared to return to public engagements – and says he’ll ‘probably’ hold a rally tomorrow

Donald Trump says he will “probably” hold a rally in Florida after he was cleared to resume public engagements from tomorrow.

His physician, Doctor Sean Conley, says the president has completed his course of treatment for coronavirus and that he has responded well.

In a statement released by White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany on Thursday, Dr Conley said: “Since returning home, his physical exam has remained stable and devoid of any indications to suggest progression of illness. Overall he’s responded extremely well to treatment, without evidence on examination of adverse therapeutic effects.

U.S. President Donald Trump looks over at reporters and photographers as the president departs Walter Reed National Military Medical Center after a fourth day of treatment for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) to return to the White House in Washington from the hospital in Bethesda, Maryland, U.S., October 5, 2020. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Image:President Trump says he is feeling ‘so good’

“Saturday will be day 10 since Thursday’s diagnosis, and based on the trajectory of advanced diagnostics the team has been conducting, I fully anticipate the president’s safe return to public engagements at that time.”

In an interview with Fox News a little while later, the president said he was feeling “so good” and is keen to get back to campaigning.

“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… probably in Florida on Saturday night, might come back and do one in Pennsylvania on the following night,” Mr Trump said.

He also said he would likely get another test for the virus on Friday.

Mr Trump and first lady Melania were diagnosed with coronavirus on 2 October after one of the president’s closest aides, Hope Hicks, tested positive.

The president spent a few days at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, where he was taken as a precaution.

Earlier, Mr Trump said he would refuse to take part in a virtual debate on 15 October that organisers were planning in response to his coronavirus diagnosis.

Joe Biden
Image:Joe Biden called the president’s behaviour ‘erratic’

His campaign manager Bill Stepien suggested that in-person debates should be held on 22 and 29 October instead.

The president had said he wasn’t willing to “waste time” on a virtual debate.

Mr Stepien said a virtual debate would only serve Joe Biden who “would be relying on his teleprompter from his basement bunker”.

Mr Biden’s campaign said Mr Trump “doesn’t make the debate schedule”, and that his “erratic behaviour does not allow him to rewrite the calendar, and pick new dates of his choosing”.

Suggesting Mr Biden would go ahead with the debate either way, the statement added: “We look forward to participating in the final debate, scheduled for 22 October, which already is tied for the latest debate date in 40 years. Donald Trump can show up, or he can decline again. That’s his choice.”

Mark Gibson

Graduates in Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 1990. Move to Los Angeles California in 2004. Specialized in Internet journalism.

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