WASHINGTON (NEWS 1130) – Reaction has been swift since the moment U.S. President Donald Trump announced he had tested positive for COVID-19.
Trump confirmed the news early Friday morning in a tweet, saying his wife, Melania, also tested positive for the coronavirus.
“We will begin our quarantine and recovery process immediately. We will get through this TOGETHER!” he wrote.
People flooded social media following this news, with the hashtag #TrumpHasCovid not surprisingly trending on Twitter just hours late.
There have been the usual “thoughts and prayers” messaging, to outright mocking and “I told you so” for the president’s response to the pandemic.
“We have your back President Trump!!! Get well soon,” one person tweeted, adding if anyone could “demolish” this virus, it would be Trump.
We have your back President Trump!!!
Get well soon
— oregon4TRUMP (@shawgerald4) October 2, 2020
“The American people are praying for our POTUS and FLOTUS! Get better, we need you!” another post reads.
The American people are praying for our POTUS and FLOTUS! Get better, we need you!
— JT Lewis (@thejtlewis) October 2, 2020
“You can clearly see how disgusting some people are who are wishing illness and worse on our President,” Laura K’s tweet reads. “Prayers for @realDonaldTrump and @FLOTUS to stay healthy!”
Meanwhile, criticism is being levelled at Trump for things like his attitude toward mask-wearing or his downplaying of the virus.
“You want me to wish good health for someone who, when given the responsibility for public safety and health, happily let thousands of people die, downplayed the situation and then blamed everyone but himself? But HE should be wished well after thousands have died on his watch?” a post reads.
Some social media users have been making light of Trump’s previous comments on how to treat COVID-19, such as when he suggested in April that injecting disinfectants into the body could possibly kill the virus. Trump, by the way, claimed to have been joking when that was brought up during the opening presidential debate on Tuesday.
“I have ZERO sympathy for you or your family,” one tweet reads. “As an ER doc, I’ve lost 3 colleagues and a 27 y.o. healthy cousin to this virus. You’re the reason 207,000 Americans are dead and over 1,200 healthcare workers. You’ve failed AMERICA. I can’t wait to VOTE YOU OUT!!!”
I have ZERO sympathy for you or your family. As an ER doc, I've lost 3 colleagues and a 27 y.o. healthy cousin to this virus. You're the reason 207,000 Americans are dead and over 1,200 healthcare workers. You've failed AMERICA. I can't wait to VOTE YOU OUT!!!
— Cleavon MD (@Cleavon_MD) October 2, 2020
World leaders have also reacted to news of Trump and the First Lady’s COVID-19 diagnoses.
There are sympathies and well-wishes from many, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, who sent his message by telegram, as well as British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who has already contracted and recovered from the coronavirus.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also offered his best, tweeting that he and Sophie, “hope you both get well soon and have a full recovery from this virus.”
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) October 2, 2020
Even critics like Reverend Jesse Jackson are offering words of support.
However, George Conway, an outspoken critic who is married to top-Trump advisor Kellyanne Conway, tweeted “He failed to protect the country. He couldn’t even protect himself.”
He failed to protect the country.
He couldn't even protect himself.
— George Conway (@gtconway3d) October 2, 2020
Trump’s diagnosis came just hours after it was confirmed his adviser, Hope Hicks, tested positive for COVID-19. It also came several hours after Trump expressed optimism that “the end of the pandemic is in sight.”
Vice President Mike Pence, meanwhile, has tested negative.
It’s unclear how this will impact the upcoming election on Nov. 3. Word of Trump’s COVID-19 diagnosis was followed by a slump in U.S. stocks.