News & Politics

A Running List of Trump-Adjacent People Who’ve Gotten Covid-19

From senior aide Hope Hicks, to national security adviser Robert O'Brien, to at least 25 Secret Service officers.

Photograph by Evy Mages
Coronavirus 2020

About Coronavirus 2020

Washingtonian is keeping you up to date on the coronavirus around DC.

With Donald Trump spreading dangerous misinformation about the Covid-19 pandemic from the White House briefing room, and the American death toll surpassing 210,000, here’s a look at the people in the President’s circle who’ve had coronavirus. We’ll continue to update this list.

Two members of the White House residence housekeeping staff
On October 5, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman Tweeted that two housekeeping staffers assigned to the third floor of the White House residence had tested positive, and were told to use “discretion” when discussing their results.

Chad Gilmartin, principal assistant press secretary; and Karoline Leavitt, assistant press secretary
After McEnany announced her positive diagnosis, NBC reported later in the day October 5 that two of her deputies also had coronavirus.

Kayleigh McEnany, White House press secretary
McEnany announced in a Tweet the morning of Monday, October 5 that she had tested positive for Covid, but was not showing symptoms. She had consistently not worn a mask during her briefings, including over the preceding weekend.

Nicholas Luna, assistant to the President
Bloomberg News reported late the evening of October 3 that Trump’s “body man” had tested positive.

Chris Christie, former New Jersey Governor
Christie, who helped Trump with debate prep earlier in the week, and also attended the Amy Coney Barrett Rose Garden event, tweeted his positive diagnosis on Saturday, October 3.

Bill Stepien, Trump’s campaign manager
Stepien received his diagnosis the evening of October 2, and was experiencing what a source described to Politico as “mild flu-like symptoms.”

At least 11 Cleveland debate staffers
The City of Cleveland confirmed on October 2 that 11 people involved in the planning and setup of the first presidential debate between Trump and Joe Biden on Wednesday, September 30, have since tested positive.

Three White House reporters
Three journalists who work at the White House, including New York Times correspondent Michael D. Shear, tested positive for Covid-19 on Friday, October 2. (Notably, press secretary Kayley McEnany has not worn a mask during her briefings.)

Kellyanne Conway
On October 2, the former presidential advisor—who also attended the Amy Coney Barrett nomination at the White House—tweeted that she has tested positive.

Thom Tillis, U.S. Senator
Tillis, like Lee, serves on the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is considering the nomination of Barrett to the Supreme Court. He was also at the Rose Garden event on September 26. He announced his positive Covid test on October 2.

Mike Lee, U.S. Senator
The Senator from Utah announced his  positive diagnosis via twitter on October 2. He attended a White House Rose Garden ceremony announcing Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett on September 26, which was widely attended by top Republican officials who were not wearing masks.

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Ronna McDaniel, chairwoman of the Republican National Committee
On Friday, October 2, McDaniel’s spokesperson confirmed that the RNC chair had tested positive for coronavirus on Wednesday afternoon, while home in Michigan, where she had been since Saturday. (She last saw President Trump on Friday, September 25.)

President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump
Just before 1 a.m. on Friday, October 2, Trump tweeted that he and Melania had both tested positive for Covid-19, and planned to quarantine at the White House. The day prior, Trump attended a fundraiser at his golf club in Bedminster and interacted with dozens of people, including campaign supporters. He reportedly did not wear a mask.

Hope Hicks, counselor to the president
Bloomberg News was the first to report October 1 that Hicks, one of Trump’s closest aides and confidantes, had tested positive for the virus. Several other outlets quickly followed with their own confirmations. The White House was reportedly informed of Hicks’s diagnosis the evening of September 30, after she had traveled with the President to a rally the same day, and to his first debate against Joe Biden a day earlier.

Robert O’Brien, national security adviser
The White House confirmed July 27 that O’Brien was quarantining with “mild symptoms,” making him the highest-ranking Trump official publicly known to have caught the virus. He reportedly caught it from his college-age daughter while on a family vacation.

Unidentified Marine
A Marine assigned to the helicopters that transport Trump tested positive on July 23.

Unidentified cafeteria worker
Two cafeterias, one in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, and another in the New Executive Office Building, were temporarily closed after the White House learned July 22 that a worker had tested positive.

Kimberly Guilfoyle, Trump campaign aide (and girlfriend of Donald Trump Jr.)
Don Jr.’s gal tested positive on July 3, just before flying to South Dakota for the President’s Fourth of July event at Mount Rushmore.

At least 25 Secret Service agents
On July 3, CNN reported that at least eight Secret Service agents were quarantining with symptoms in Phoenix, after catching the virus while preparing for a visit by Mike Pence. According to the same story, as many as 15 agents tested positive in June after coming down with Covid while preparing for a Trump campaign rally, also in Phoenix. And following Trump’s rally in Tulsa on June 20, two Secret Service agents tested positive for Covid.

At least eight campaign staffers
Eight members of the Trump campaign’s advance team that helped orchestrate the June 20 Tulsa rally tested positive for the virus.

Tomas Philipson, former acting chairman, White House Council of Economic Advisers
The same week he announced his resignation from the White House, Philipson shared that he’d had a mild case of coronavirus at some point in June.

Katie Miller, press secretary to Vice President Mike Pence (and wife of White House senior adviser Stephen Miller)
Katie Miller learned of her positive test result on May 8. She returned to work about three weeks later.

Ivanka Trump’s personal assistant
On May 8, CNN reported that Ivanka’s unnamed assistant tested positive, but had been teleworking for two months.

Trump’s personal valet
The White House confirmed May 7 that a U.S. military member who works as one of Trump’s personal valets—staffers who serve meals and take care of other personal needs for the President—had coronavirus.

Unidentified staffer to Mike Pence
The White House announced March 20 that an anonymous member of the Vice President’s staff had tested positive earlier that month.

Fabio Wajngarten, communications secretary to Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro
The Brazilian official’s positive test result came to light March 12, right after he’d spent a weekend with Trump at Mar-a-Lago.

Unidentified CPAC attendee
A VIP ticket-holder at this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference, held February 26 to February 29 at National Harbor, had access to an untold number of Republican bigwigs, including Senator Ted Cruz, and congressmen Matt Gaetz, Paul Gosar, and Doug Collins. (Gaetz was aboard Air Force One, with the President, when he learned he’d come into contact with the man at CPAC. Gaetz later tested negative.)

This list, as well as the count of U.S. Covid-19 deaths, was last updated October 5, 2020.

Senior Editor

Marisa M. Kashino joined Washingtonian in 2009 as a staff writer, and became a senior editor in 2014. She oversees the magazine’s real estate and home design coverage, and writes long-form feature stories. She was a 2020 Livingston Award finalist for her two-part investigation into a possible wrongful conviction stemming from a murder in rural Virginia. Kashino lives in Northeast DC.

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