President Donald Trump announced on Twitter on Sunday afternoon that his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani had tested positive for the coronavirus.
Giuliani "tested positive for the China virus," tweeted Trump, using the racist term he commonly uses for the coronavirus. "Get well soon, Rudy, we will carry on !!!"
. @RudyGiuliani, by far the greatest mayor in NYC history and who worked tirelessly to expose the (by far most corrupt) elections in US history, tested positive for the China virus. Get well soon Rudy, we carry on !!!
– Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 6, 2020
Giuliani's positive test comes about two weeks after his son tests positive. It is unclear how and when Giuliani contracted the virus.
Giuliani has been roaming the country consistently for the past few weeks, leading to Trump's failed legal effort to challenge the 2020 presidential election results, and has been to Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Arizona for the past two years – all high-virus states for weeks. He has been in contact with members of Trump's legal team for the past few days, as well as with witnesses who falsely alleged voting errors and with Michigan lawmakers.
On Wednesday, he participated in a testimony falsely alleging that illegal votes were cast in Michigan in a largely maskless session before the Michigan House Oversight Committee. Depending on when Giuliani was infected, those present may be at risk of exposure.
The president didn't say on Sunday whether Giuliani is symptomatic or whether he plans to isolate himself to avoid infecting others with Covid-19. At 76 years of age and identified as a male, he belongs to a group at higher risk of complications and more negative consequences of the disease.
Giuliani is the youngest of many personalities and employees in orbit of the President to be infected with the coronavirus, including Trump himself, much of the President's family, his chief of staff, several senior advisors and the White House press secretary. In total, more than a dozen people have tested positive in the President's personal orbit since October.
Part of this spread has been attributed to the fact that Trump's inner circle has routinely refused to wear masks and adhere to social distancing protocols. For example, the president has hosted a number of large, maskless indoor events – including a party to celebrate Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett. This party was led by the federal leading infectious disease expert and member of the national coronavirus task force, Dr. Anthony Fauci, known as the "Super Spreader" event.
Giuliani has attended a number of these high-risk events, from the hearing on Wednesday to a rally the former mayor held ahead of the election for Trump. Like many on the president's team, Giuliani hasn't shown strong support for precautionary measures like wearing masks. In October, Giuliani criticized President-elect Joe Biden for his habit of wearing masks, saying that using it should create fear.
"It's not a science to wear that mask, Joe, when you're giving a speech and people are 30 to 40 feet from you," Giuliani said during an interview with Fox News. "The only thing that can infect you is the teleprompter near you. So I can see through you. This is a political statement to scare people with this mask. You don't need this mask when you're on a podium. "
Are you helping keep Vox free for everyone?
Understanding has enormous power. Vox answers your most important questions and gives you clear information to help you understand an increasingly chaotic world. A financial contribution to Vox will help us continue to provide free explanatory journalism to the millions who rely on us. Please consider contributing to Vox today, starting at $ 3.