United States President Donald Trump on Saturday said he was “feeling great”, in his first public address after contracting Covid-19, PTI reported. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump tested positive for the contagion last week.
“I am feeling great,” Trump told his supporters gathered at the South Lawns of the White House, addressing them from a balcony. “This is the single most important election in the history of our country. Get out and vote, and I love you.”
White House Physician Sean Conley said that the US president was no longer a transmission risk to others, ABC News reported.
“This evening I am happy to report that in addition to the president meeting CDC criteria for the safe discontinuation of isolation, this morning’s COVID PCR sample demonstrates, by currently recognised standards, he is no longer a transmission risk to others,” Conley was quoted as saying by the news channel.
He added: “Now at day 10 from symptom onset, fever-free for well over 24 hours and all symptoms improved, the assortment of advanced diagnostic tests obtained reveal there is no longer evidence of actively replicating virus.”
The president had been admitted to a military hospital for treatment, and returned to the White House on October 5. The US presidential elections are scheduled for November 3, with results to be announced on the same day.
“We got a great poll in Florida,” Trump told his supporters. “We got a great poll in North Carolina. We got a great poll in Nevada. Georgia is looking fantastic. Texas is looking fantastic. We got a great poll in Texas and great polls all over the place.”
The president claimed that his Democratic Party opponents, presidential candidate Joe Biden and his running mate Kamala Harris, would “crush the comeback” the United States had made from the coronavirus through “unscientific lockdowns”. “We have a level of support the likes of which nobody has ever seen,” he claimed.
The White House, in a statement, described the address as an official event during which Trump delivered remarks to peaceful protesters in support of law and order. But Trump also highlighted his administration’s “monumental achievements” for communities of colour – record employment, historic low poverty rates, criminal justice reform, billions of investment through opportunity zones etc.
“Everyone here this afternoon is part of a growing nationwide movement called BLEXIT,” he said. “Black and Latino Americans are rejecting the radical socialist left and they are embracing our pro-jobs, pro-worker, pro-police, and pro-American agenda. You understand that to protect the lives of Black Americans, and all Americans, we must support our police.” Trump claimed that Biden and Harris will take away funds and firearms from law enforcement agencies.
Trump said that while the criminal justice system must investigate errant police officers, there can be no mob rule. “No one is hurt more by the left-wing war on cops than African-Americans,” he said. “Last year, in just four Democrat-run cities, over 1,000 African-Americans were murdered as a result of violent crimes. And the riots, looting, and arson disproportionately hurt Black and Latino communities.” Trump said he plans to provide 30 lakh new jobs for black Americans, increased access to capital by $500 billion (Rs 36 lakh crore), and advanced home ownership.
“We will support our police, we will restore safety to our streets, we will return our economy to full prosperity, and next year will be one of the greatest years in the history of our country!” Trump added.
The president had earlier this week refused to take part in the second presidential debate with Biden, after the Commission on Presidential Debates announced that the October 15 event would be held virtually. Following this, on Friday, the debate was cancelled.