U.S. President Donald Trump reacts to a question during a news conference in the Briefing Room of the White House on September 27, 2020 in Washington, DC. Joshua Roberts/Getty Images
Politicians, public health officials, and commentators are lambasting the White House’s failure to provide adequate contact tracing and guidance for thousands of people whose well-being was jeopardized last week after President Donald Trumptraveled to multiple events around the country, at least one of which he participated in even after knowing that he had been exposed to the coronavirus.
While the contradictory information shared by the Trump administration and medical team about the chronology and status of Trump’s illness has puzzled observers, critics said it is clear that the president chose to expose potentially thousands of people to Covid-19 last week—particularly by interacting with hundreds of guests at a fundraiser he hosted at his Bedminster, New Jersey golf course on Thursday evening—instead of quarantining immediately after the Thursday morning diagnosis of his adviser, Hope Hicks, as Common Dreams reported.
A list obtained by WaPo shows Trump interacted w/ 207 ppl at Bedminster the day he tested positive. He didn’t wear a mask on plane/helicopter after Hicks’ infection. Aides say Trump, others infected were around thousands. And now, little contact tracing. https://t.co/eutW2JqFg5
— Yasmeen Abutaleb (@yabutaleb7) October 4, 2020
“The scope of the damage here is unfathomable,” writer Rebecca Traister tweeted on Saturday.
Not only did Trump and other infected members of his inner circle put possibly thousands of individuals at risk of contracting Covid-19, but according to reportingfrom the Washington Post, “there was little evidence on Saturday that the White House or the campaign had reached out to these potentially exposed people, or even circulated guidance to the rattled staffers within the White House complex.”