White House Reporter Believed to Have Coronavirus

Gene Maddaus

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A reporter who works at the White House is believed to have the novel coronavirus, the White House Correspondents’ Association said on Monday.

In a memo to its members, the WHCA said the reporter was at the White House four times in the last two weeks: on March 9, 11, 16 and 18.

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“We encourage all journalists who were at the White House during this time period to review public health guidance, consult their medical professionals and take the appropriate next steps,” the WHCA said in the memo.

The organization has previously asked White House reporters to work from home if possible, and to stay away from the briefings if they feel ill.

“We ask again that all members who can stay home or work remotely please do so,” the memo stated. “Please do not come to the White House if you do not have a workspace or an assigned seat on that day. And please DO NOT come into the White House if you are feeling at all ill.”

The memo did not identify the reporter, and said it was a “suspected case” of the virus.

At Monday’s press conference, President Trump said, “We extend our best wishes to the person affected.”

Reporters have been spaced apart at the daily White House briefings on the coronavirus, in keeping with social distancing guidance.

On Sunday, the WHCA said it was postponing the association’s annual dinner, which had been set for April 25.

“Saturday Night Live” star Kenan Thompson was set to host the event, while Hasan Minhaj, of the Netflix show “Patriot Act,” was booked as a featured speaker. Trump has not attended the last three dinners, breaking a long-standing custom.

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