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Trump spends first night at Walter Reed for Covid-19 treatment

Updates on President Donald Trump's coronavirus diagnosis.

President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump have tested positive for Covid-19, the president announced early Friday.

Trump was transported by helicopter to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Friday evening as a precautionary measure recommended by the president’s physician, officials said, and he is expected to remain in the hospital for a few days.

The president’s doctor said he was administered an antibody cocktail, along with vitamins, and is fatigued with a low-grade fever, while Melania Trump has a mild cough and headache.

Trump becomes the latest world leader to be diagnosed with the virus just weeks ahead of the election and in the midst of a busy campaign schedule for him and Democratic nominee Joe Biden.

This live coverage has ended. Please continue reading the October 3, 2020 liveblog for the latest updates on President Trump's health.

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QAnon followers elated at Trump Covid news

Followers of QAnon, the baseless conspiracy theory that posits the president is leading a secret war against a deep-state cabal of Satanic pedophiles, reacted to news of Trump’s Covid-19 infection with near-universal celebration.

On QAnon forums and Facebook groups, people traded conspiracy theories about Trump’s diagnosis, believing it to be part of an elaborate plan to isolate the leader while violent retribution is taken against believed evil-doers, a time known within the conspiracy theory as “the storm.” 

QAnon believers also hold that the coronavirus, which has killed over 200,000 Americans, is a “hoax,” engineered to hurt the president. They have rallied around ineffective treatments like hydroxychloroquine and have refused to wear masks or get a vaccine when one becomes available.

Notable QAnon influencers spent early Friday attempting to "decode" the president's tweet announcing he had the disease and trying to deduce clues from the statement's use of capital letters. The official "Q" account, which followers believe to be a secret government insider giving them hints about the president's plan, has not posted since the president's announcement.

QAnon was among the top trending searches on Google Friday morning.

Melania Trump says she’s also experiencing mild symptoms

Earlier Friday, a White House official said the president was also experiencing mild symptoms.

White House knew about Hope Hicks' diagnosis before Thursday fundraiser

White House chief of staff Mark Meadows said Friday morning that the White House learned shortly before Trump's Thursday fundraiser in New Jersey that longtime Trump aide Hope Hicks had tested positive for Covid-19.

“I’m not going to get into the tick-tock. I can tell you in terms of Hope, we discovered that right as the Marine One was taking off yesterday, we actually pulled some of the people who had been traveling and in close contact — the reason why it had reported out is we had already started the contact tracing just prior to that event,” he told reporters.

Meadows also told reporters that he, Jared Kushner, Dan Scavino and others have tested negative for the virus, but said the White House expects that more staffers will test positive for the coronavirus following the president’s diagnosis.

“I fully expect that as this virus continues to go on, other people in the White House will certainly have a positive test result and we’ve got the mitigation plan in place to make sure that the government not only continues to move forward but the work of the American people continues to work forward," he said.

Who was Trump in contact with this week? Here are some of the people

Trump and the first lady are among 300,000 Americans to catch Covid-19 this week

Texas, California, and Wisconsin have seen the most cases in the past seven days.

Pelosi awaits results after taking Covid-19 test 'out of an abundance of caution'

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said Friday that she has been tested for Covid-19 and is awaiting results.

"This is tragic, it's very sad, but it also is something that, again, going into crowds unmasked and all the rest is sort of a brazen invitation for something like this to happen. It's sad that it did, but nonetheless hopeful that it will be a transition to a saner approach to what this virus is all about," Pelosi said on MSNBC's "Live with Stephanie Ruhle."

Asked if the White House has contacted her about the continuity of government since the House speaker is third in line to the presidency after the vice president, Pelosi said they haven't, but she noted that Vice President Mike Pence tested negative Friday.

Out of an abundance of caution, Pelosi said she was tested Friday morning for Covid-19 because of her in-person meetings with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, though his spokesman said that he has tested negative. The speaker said she is awaiting her results, and said that she has concerns about the accuracy of the tests especially because of the current situation at the White House.

Barron Trump tests negative for Covid-19

Barron Trump, the president's 14-year-old son, has tested negative for Covid-19.

"Barron has tested negative and all precautions are being taken to ensure he’s kept safe and healthy," Melania Trump's chief of staff, Stephanie Grisham, told NBC News.

Where Trump went the week he was diagnosed with Covid-19

From Ohio to Minnesota to New Jersey, and back to Washington, D.C., the president crisscrossed a chunk of the country this week.

Amy Coney Barrett tests negative for Covid-19

Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett has tested negative for Covid-19, White House deputy press secretary Judd Deere said in a statement.

"Judge Barrett was with the President last on Saturday when she was nominated," Deere said. "Judge Barrett is tested daily for COVID-19—she has tested negative."

He added, "She is following CDC guidance and best practices, including social distancing, wearing face coverings, and frequently washes hands."

RNC chair tested positive for Covid-19 on Wednesday

Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel tested positive for Covid-19 on Wednesday.

"After a member of her family tested positive for COVID-19, the Chairwoman was tested for the virus," an RNC spokesperson said in a statement on Friday. "On Wednesday afternoon, she got confirmation she was COVID-19 positive. She has been at her home in Michigan since last Saturday.”

Shocked markets swoon on fresh uncertainty

Major indices fell at the opening bell Friday morning after President Donald Trump's diagnosis injected fresh uncertainty into the forecast, driving investors to sell off shares and move to safe haven assets.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell by around 375 points, the S&P 500 dropped nearly 1.5 percent, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite index fell by over 1.7 percent.

Assets seen as safe havens during volatility rallied, with the dollar and yen rising. Gold initially rose but pared gains to trade at $1,907. Crude oil fell to $37 a barrel.

“The news came as a shock to investors and the uncertainty of what lay next was quickly priced into markets,” wrote Peter Essele, Head of Portfolio Management for Commonwealth Financial Network, in an email.

“It seems reasonable to assume that markets will be on shaky ground throughout October with the perfect storm of a highly contentious election and a pandemic that remains stubbornly at the forefront," Essele said.

But the losses could also be short lived. Trump's positive Covid-19 test could spur action on deadlocked bills to inject new rounds of coronavirus stimulus, according to Jamie Cox, Managing Partner for Harris Financial Group.