President Donald Trump said late Thursday that he hoped to resume in-person rallies this weekend, citing a note from his doctor that anticipated he’d be fit to do so.
Speaking with Fox News‘ Sean Hannity, Trump said his team would try to arrange a rally in Florida, depending on logistics.
“I think I’m going to try doing a rally on Saturday night if we have enough time to put it together, but we want to do a rally probably in Florida on Saturday night,” he said. “I might come back and do one in Pennsylvania the following night, and it’s incredible what’s going on. I feel so good.“
The president has been on a hiatus for public events after testing positive for the coronavirus last week.
Sean Conley, Trump’s physician, said in a memo on Thursday afternoon that the president had completed his therapy for Covid-19 and has remained stable since returning from the hospital on Monday. Conley wrote that expected Trump to be able to pick up public engagements again as of Saturday.
Trump was hospitalized at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center last week a day after his positive test. His doctors, including Conley, were elusive at the time when asked specific questions about the president’s health, particularly on his lung scans and when he last tested negative for the disease.
When Hannity asked whether he had tested negative for the virus since his diagnosis, Trump said he would probably take a test on Friday.
“There’s no reason to test all the time,“ he said.
Trump’s diagnosis threw a wrench into the campaign’s plans, notably with the transition of the second presidential debate into a virtual affair. The debate organizers said the move was to ensure the safety of everyone involved, but Trump was irate at the change and announced he would not participate. His campaign accused the nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates of acting in a way beneficial to the Democratic nominee, Joe Biden.
On Thursday evening, the campaign said that Conley’s memo made it clear there was “no medical reason” for the commission to change the parameters of the debate. But Frank Fahrenkopf, the commission’s co-founder and Republican co-chair, told The Associated Press late Thursday that there was no way the commission would make the second debate in person, regardless of Trump’s protests.
Still, the president has had time to get his voice heard from his White House confinement. In the days following his hospital stay, he has been particularly active on Twitter and engaged in a lively Thursday interview with Fox Business’ Maria Bartiromo.
Trump announced his diagnosis last week as dozens of people in his inner circle tested positive for the disease. The spread is likely linked to a number of in-person Republican events that the president attended shortly before.
Despite the diagnosis, the Trump campaign has continued to take a lax attitude toward guidelines meant to prevent the spread of the virus. Trump’s son, Donald Jr., participated in an indoor campaign event on Thursday in which few people wore masks.