World Events

Trump campaign agrees on moving second debate back by a week

President Donald Trump removes his mask upon returning to the White House from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on October 5. Win McNamee/Getty Images

It’s been less than a week since President Trump announced he tested positive for Covid-19. He returned from Walter Reed Medical Center this week on Monday. Unsatisfied with the temporary office space erected for him in the White House residence, where he was isolating, Trump returned to the Oval Office Wednesday.

And this morning, the President gave a 56-minute interview to Fox Business. Here are the highlights from the phone interview:

The President said he will not participate in a virtual debate.

The Commission on Presidential Debates announced that the second debate between President Trump and Joe Biden will be held virtually. But Trump said he won’t appear.

“I’m not going to waste my time on a virtual debate. That’s not what debating is all about,” he told Fox in an interview, calling it “ridiculous.” He lamented that the commission “didn’t even tell us about it” and that it is “trying to protect Joe Biden.”

Trump complained that he would have to “sit behind a computer” in a virtual debate and the moderator could “cut you off whenever they want.”

Trump said he doesn’t believe he is contagious

“I don’t think I’m contagious, at all,” he said less than a week after testing positive for coronavirus, adding that he is immune from another infection.

He attributed his recovery to being a “perfect physical specimen.”

He said he’s ready to hold campaign rallies.

Less than a week after testing positive for coronavirus, he said he is ready to resume campaign rallies. He insisted he is, in fact, better than normal and is prepared to resume his campaign schedule.

“I think I’m better…to a point where I’d love to do a rally tonight. I wanted to do one last night,” Trump said. “I feel perfect. There’s nothing wrong.”

But then he said that he hasn’t been tested for the virus.

It’s unclear how the President is assessing that he is not contagious. When asked if he was recently tested, he said:

“No, I’ll be tested very soon, but I’m essentially very clean. They say it’s over a period of six, seven days,” he said. 

He called his illness “almost a gift from heaven.”

Trump again praised the drugs he received at Walter Reed but said he couldn’t have avoided contracting coronavirus.

“No matter how good the security you’re not going to protect yourself from this thing,” he said, adding later: “You catch this thing. It’s particles of dust.” The virus is not “particles of dust.”

Some context to keep in mind: For Trump to not be contagious, it needs to have been at least 10 days, at a bare minimum, since Trump’s first symptoms and 24 hours fever-free without taking medication that could reduce his fever. Trump should still be isolating, not campaigning. While he may have some degree of protection, no one can say for certain whether he is immune.  


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