Continuity of government in place after Trump tests positive for Covid

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Friday that the continuity of government remains in place following President Donald Trump’s coronavirus diagnosis.

Pelosi, 80, who is second in line to assume the duties of the presidency, said on MSNBC that “out of an abundance of caution” she was tested for the virus Friday morning, but has yet to receive her results.

She said she had not been contacted by the White House about the subject of succession.

Trump, 74, announced on Twitter after midnight that he and first lady Melania Trump have tested positive for Covid-19. The president is experiencing “mild symptoms” of the virus, NBC News reported, citing a White House official.

Vice President Mike Pence, who is first in line, tested negative Friday morning, his spokesman said.

When asked on MSNBC if the White House had reached out to her regarding the continuity of government, Pelosi, D-Calif., said, “No, they haven’t.”

“But that is an ongoing, not with the White House but with the military, quite frankly, in terms of the — some officials in the government,” she said.

“Let us just all pray for the president’s health — thank God the vice president has tested negatively and the second lady, as well,” Pelosi added. “So again, that continuity of government is always in place.”

The White House did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment on Pelosi’s remarks.

Asked about the president’s diagnosis, Pelosi offered her sympathies — but also suggested Trump’s attitude toward the virus could be instructive.

“We all received that news with great sadness. I always pray for the president and his family that they’re safe,” Pelosi said. “This is tragic, it’s very sad. But it also is something that, again, going into crowds, unmasked, and all the rest, was sort of a brazen invitation for something like this to happen.”

Pelosi appeared to be referring to Trump’s decision to resume holding his signature campaign rallies in the run-up to the Nov. 3 presidential election. The events regularly gather packed crowds of Trump supporters, many of whom do not wear masks or other protective equipment. 

Pelosi said that while she is sad to hear of the president’s diagnosis, she is nonetheless “hopeful that it will be a transition to a saner approach to what this virus is all about.”

More than 7.2 million people in the U.S. have been infected by the coronavirus and more than 207,000 people have died, according to a tally from Johns Hopkins University.

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