President Donald Trump announced on Twitter Sunday afternoon that his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani had tested positive for the coronavirus.
Giuliani “tested positive for the Chinese virus”, Trump tweeted, using the racist term he usually uses to refer to the coronavirus. “Get Rudy well soon, we’ll continue !!!”
.@RudyGiuliani, by far the greatest mayor in New York history, and who has worked tirelessly to denounce the most corrupt (by far!) election in U.S. history, has tested positive for the Chinese virus . Heal Rudy soon, we will continue !!!
– Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 6, 2020
Positive Giuliani test comes about two weeks after his son tested positive. It is not known how and when Giuliani contracted the virus.
Giuliani has constantly traveled across the country in recent weeks, leading Trump’s unsuccessful legal efforts to challenge the 2020 presidential election results, and has visited Michigan, Pennsylvania and Arizona – all states with a high number of virus cases – in the last two weeks. He has been in contact with members of Trump’s legal team in recent days, as well as witnesses falsely alleging voting irregularities, and Michigan lawmakers.
On Wednesday, he participated in testimony falsely claiming that votes were illegally cast in Michigan during an indoor session, largely unmasked, before the Michigan House Oversight Committee. Depending on when Giuliani was infected, those present may be at risk of exposure.
The president did not say on Sunday whether Giuliani was symptomatic or if he was planning to self-isolate to avoid infecting others with Covid-19. At 76, and identifying as a man, he is part of a group considered to be at higher risk for complications and a more negative outcome of the disease.
Giuliani is the latest of many characters and staff in the president’s orbit to contract the coronavirus, including Trump himself, much of the president’s family, his chief of staff, several senior advisers and the attaché press release from the White House. All together, more than a dozen people in the president’s personal orbit have tested positive since October.
Part of that spread has been attributed to the fact that Trump’s inner circle has consistently refused to wear masks and follow social distancing protocols. For example, the President has hosted a number of large indoor events without a mask – including a party celebrating Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett. This party has been called a “super spreader” event by Dr.Anthony Fauci, federal infectious disease expert and member of the National Coronavirus Task Force.
Giuliani attended a number of these types of high-risk events, from Wednesday’s hearing to a rally the former mayor detained for Trump before the elections. Like many members of the President’s team, Giuliani did not show strong support for precautions such as wearing a mask; in October, Giuliani critical President-elect Joe Biden for his habit of wearing a mask, and said its use is believed to cause fear.
“It is not a science to wear this mask, Joe, when you are giving a speech and people are 30 to 40 yards away from you,” Giuliani said during an interview with Fox News. “The only thing you can infect is the teleprompter near you. So I see through you. It is a political statement to scare people by wearing this mask. You don’t need this mask when standing on a podium. “