Fauci Won’t Say Whether Trump Should Be Tested For Coronavirus

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Dr. Anthony Fauci speaks to the press outside the White House on March 12, 2020. (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)
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March 12, 2020 6:51 p.m.
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National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases director and coronavirus task force member Anthony Fauci refused to comment on whether President Trump should be tested for coronavirus while speaking to reporters on the White House driveway Thursday afternoon.

Over the weekend, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and his press aide Fabio Wajngarten met with Trump and Vice President Mike Pence in South Florida. On Thursday morning, Brazilian newspapers reported that Wajngarten tested positive for coronavirus after returning to Brazil from the U.S. Both the Brazilian Health Ministry and Bolsonaro’s office confirmed Thursday that Wajngarten — who posted an Instagram photo of him standing close to Trump and Pence at Mar-a-Lago — tested positive for COVID-19.

When asked about how anyone could make the argument that Trump should not be tested given how he’s recently been in contact with someone who tested positive, Fauci declined to comment on whether the President should undergo coronavirus testing.

“I am not going to comment on an individual who has a very competent physician,” Fauci said, before adding that the White House physician is “very competent.”

On Thursday morning, Trump told White House reporters that he is “not concerned” about Bolsonaro’s press aide contracting the coronavirus.

White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham issued a statement Thursday afternoon saying that given how both Trump and Pence barely interacted with Wajngarten, they “do not require being tested at this time.”

Watch Fauci’s remarks below:

Key Coronavirus Crisis Links

TPM’s COVID-19 hub.
Josh Marshall’s Twitter List of Trusted Experts (Epidemiologists, Researchers, Clinicians, Journalists, Government Agencies) providing reliable real-time information on the COVID-19 Crisis.
COVID-19 Tracking Project (updated data on testing and infections in the U.S.).
Johns Hopkins Global COVID-19 Survey (most up to date numbers globally and for countries around the world).
Worldometers.info (extensive source of information and data visualizations on COVID-19 Crisis — discussion of data here).
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