US President Donald Trump has planned to hold an event at the White House on Saturday, the first time since his October 2 announcement that he and the First Lady had tested positive for the novel coronavirus, according to media reports.
A White House official told The Hill news website on Friday that the President will address attendants of the event on the South Lawn from the Blue Room Balcony, suggesting that he will not be in close proximity to any one.
According to an invite obtained by ABC News, the event will feature “remarks to peaceful protesters for law and order” by the President.
Informed sources have said that the gathering is in conjunction with a previously planned event organized by controversial conservative activist Candace Owens’ group Blexit, a campaign to urge Black Americans to leave the Democratic Party.
“All attendees must bring a mask with them and will be instructed to wear it on the White House Complex,” one of the informed sources told ABC News.
“All attendees must submit to a Covid-19 screening tomorrow morning. This will consist of a temperature check and a brief questionnaire.
“The health and safety of all attendees is our priority and following CDC guidelines is strongly encouraged,” the source added.
Also on Friday, the Trump campaign announced that the President will hold a rally in Florida on October 12.
It was confirmed by the President in a tweet, saying: “Will be in Sanford, Florida on Monday for a very big rally.”
Reacting to the announcements of the White House event and also the Florida rally, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s deputy direct response coordinator Mike Gwin said that “Trump seems to be living in an alternate reality where he isn’t sick and contagious with Covid-19”.
“This decision is stunningly reckless and irresponsible, and it’s only the latest evidence that Trump has waved the white flag of defeat against this virus even as it kills thousands of Americans each week and batters our economy,” ABC News quoted Gwin as saying.
On Thursday, White House physician Sean Conley had said that Trump would be able to make a “safe return” to public events by Saturday, which marks 10 days since his Covid-19 diagnosis, and that he has responded “extremely well” to his treatment.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that patients self-isolate for at least 10 days after the onset of symptoms from the coronavirus.