I guess the president is feeling like himself again. At a rally Monday night, Trump did something quintessentially Trumpian: talk about doing something gross to women.
In this particular instance, Trump—in another attempt to convince his supporters that he’s completely recovered from his coronavirus hospitalization—told the crowd he would enter the throng and kiss “everyone in the audience.”
“Now they say I’m immune,” Trump said. “I feel so powerful. I’ll walk in there, I’ll kiss everyone in that audience. I’ll kiss the guys and the beautiful women, just give you a big fat kiss.”
Admittedly, the first part of this sentence is even more concerning than the second. As is the fact that this rally, which was held in Florida, happened at all.
Ahead of the event, White House physician Sean Conley reported that the president had tested negative on “consecutive days,” using a covid-19 test that Conley said measures viral load and other indicators. But the White House hasn’t made clear which consecutive days, and the test itself can be somewhat unreliable. According to CNN, the Abbott BinaxNOW test Conley gave Trump has only been validated in people for up to seven days after symptom onset; after that, the Food and Drug Admnistration isn’t sure how accurate the test is. Trump is (supposedly) at least 10 days out.
Yet Trump continues to claim that he’s become “immune” to covid now (when very little is known about the body’s immune response after recovery from the virus), and insist on holding in-person events, including Monday night’s rally, which was expected to draw thousands.
“We’ve seen that when you have situations of congregate settings where there are a lot of people without masks, the data speak for themselves,” Anthony Fauci warned hours before the event. “It happens. And now is even more so a worse time to do that, because when you look at what’s going on in the United States, it’s really very troublesome.”
But hey, if you’ve already done one superspreader event, what’s one more?