While speaking at his Johnstown, Pennsylvania presidential campaign rally, President Donald Trump remarked briefly on being courageous in the face of COVID-19, noting that he refused to hide from the Chinese virus, caught it as a result, then recovered from the disease and is now immune from it as a result.
“I could have stayed in the basement of the White House, or maybe the top floor of the White House,” said President Trump, referring to his decision to move to Walter Reed Medical Center after being tested positive for COVID-19. “I could have done that, but I’m the President of the United States, I can’t do that. I’ve got to get out, and I have to meet people, and I have to see people.”
“And I know it’s risky to do that, but you have to do what you have to do. You know, I’m the president. I can’t sit in the basement and say, ‘Let’s wait this thing out.’ I’m not going to do that,” added the president.
President Trump then joked that, as a result of contracting and successfully beating the China-originated illness, his body now generates antibodies that fight the virus, thus leaving him immune.
“And now I’m immune, they tell me, I’m immune. I could come down and start kissing everybody, I’ll kiss every guy, man and woman. Look at that guy, how handsome he is, I’ll kiss him,” joked President Trump. “Not with a lot of enjoyment, but that’s okay.”
President Trump: I'm immune. I can come down and start kissing everybody (…) Look at that guy, how handsome he is. I'll kiss him, not with a lot of enjoyment, but that's OK😂 pic.twitter.com/4MF8RZNxiY
— Woj Pawelczyk (@Woj_Pawelczyk) October 14, 2020
President Trump’s decision to briefly leave Walter Reed to visit his supporters, along with his decision to triumphantly remove his mask when returning to the White House, were both severely scrutinized by Democrats and the media.
In his defense, President Trump explained his decision to visit the supporters gathered outside the hospital was made because while in a heavily fortified part of the hospital, the president “could hear people screaming and shouting with love, with real love.”