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In his first on-camera interview appearance since being diagnosed with the coronavirus last week, President Donald Trump appeared on Fox News late Friday for a remote, unofficial “televisit” from FNC contributor Dr. Marc Siegel.
The televisit aired on Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”
It was technically just an interview between the two men that’d been recorded earlier that afternoon, but Siegel framed it as an unofficial “televisit” from the get-go.
“This is not officially a televisit, though as you probably realize I’ve done hundreds. But I hope you’ll indulge me and let you be the patient, and I’ll be the doctor here, and I promise you no co-pay,” he jokingly said as the interview began.
For his first question, he asked the president how he was feeling.
“I feel really good, I feel very strong. I know a lot of people that have had the COVID or the China virus as I call it because it came from China, but I feel really strong, and a lot of people don’t feel that way sometimes for a while afterwards,” the president replied.
Watch part one of the unofficial televisit below:
Siegel then pressed Trump on the “prominent symptoms” he’d experienced just prior to being flown to Walter Reed Medical Center the previous Friday.
The president replied by describing how he’d felt weak but staunchly maintaining that he’d never had a problem with breathing.
“I didn’t feel strong. I didn’t have a problem with breathing, which a lot of people seem to have. I had none of that. I didn’t feel very strong. I didn’t feel very vital. I didn’t feel like the president of the U.S. should feel. And I knew that there was something that was a little bit off. … But more weakness than anything else,” he said.
Though this has been verified repeatedly by Physician to the President Dr. Sean Conley, journalists have rushed to try to debunk it:
“I didn’t have a problem breathing,” President Trump when asked how he felt when he was taken to Walter Reed last Friday
He was put on supplemental oxygen in the hours before he was taken to the hospital
— Jordan Fabian (@Jordanfabian) October 10, 2020
Pres Trump says of his symptoms last week: “I didn’t feel very strong. I didn’t feel very vital. I didn’t feel like the President of the US should feel.”
He said he didn’t really any trouble breathing. We do know his oxygen saturation levels dropped 2x & he got supplemental O2
— Sara Cook (@saraecook) October 10, 2020
“I didn’t have a problem with breathing,” says Trump, who received supplemental oxygen at least twice last weekend, according to his doctors.
— Matt Brennan (@thefilmgoer) October 10, 2020
Speaking at a briefing last Sunday, Conley explained that he’d recommended the president try a brief burst of oxygen because his oxygen levels had dipped below 94 percent, not because he’d been experiencing breathing problems.
“I recommended that we try some supplemental oxygen to see how he would respond. He was adamant that he didn’t need it, he was not short of breath. He was tired and had the fever, and that was about it,” he said.
As the unofficial televisit continued Friday, the president then spoke about his treatment.
“I took the Regeneron, and Eli Lilly makes a similar medicine … and within a period of 24 hours, I felt very different. I think I could’ve left the hospital a lot earlier, but it made a tremendous difference. Markedly so. I felt very good. You would have sort of a sore throat … but I felt really good after taking this for a period of time,” he said.
“I’d like to I said I’m going to send it to everybody that’s got the problem, and we’re going to send it free of charge, including seniors of course.”
President Trump working hard to distribute ‘free’ doses of new treatment he credits for swift recovery https://t.co/ubd2OLsFdW
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) October 8, 2020
According to the president, as of Friday he was medication-free.
“Right now I’m medication free. I’m not taking any medications as of probably eight hours ago or so. I’m medication-free, which frankly makes me feel good, I don’t like medication,” he explained.
The interview then moved on to a discussion about the surprise drive-by the president had performed last weekend for his supporters.
“I had tremendous numbers of people, I could hear them from the hospital and I was way up high in this very fortified military hospital that’s built to the highest standard. Yet through these powerful windows, I could hear people screaming and shouting with love, with real love,” he said.
“And after two days I said I want to go out and say hello to the people, and I went to the Secret Service, and these are the people who are with me all the time, and they said we have no problem. I said I just want to take a drive-by them and just wave. And you saw what happened. It was a great display of love out there.”
Yet the media predictably portrayed the drive-by as a sick, malicious, veritable act of biological terror that had placed the lives of the Secret Service agents at risk.
Watch part two of the televisit below:
The interview eventually moved on to the elephant in the room, namely whether the president is cured yet and thus ready to return to rallying across the nation and debating Democrat vice presidential nominee Joe Biden.
“I have been retested, and I haven’t even found out numbers or anything yet but I’ve been retested, and I know I met either the bottom of the scale or free,” he said.
According to Conley, the president should be good to go by Saturday.
“Overall he’s responded extremely well to treatment, without evidence on examination of adverse therapeutic effects,” he’d said in a statement late Thursday.
“Saturday will be Day 10 since Thursday’s diagnosis, and based on the trajectory of advanced diagnostics the team has been conducting, I fully anticipate the President’s safe return to public engagements at that time.”
During an interview with Sean Hannity, @realDonaldTrump said his campaign is trying to make last-minute arrangements to hold a rally this weekend in Florida. Here’s the latest letter from White House physician Dr. Sean Conley regarding the president’s health @BN9 pic.twitter.com/afPQfLnX2l
— Angie Angers (@angie_angers) October 9, 2020
But despite the president’s swift recovery, the second presidential debate scheduled for Oct. 15th has been canceled by the Commission on Presidential Debates because of the president’s refusal to participate in a virtual one versus an in-person one.
— Erin Perrine (@ErinMPerrine) October 8, 2020
The president may hold a rally instead on the 15th.
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