Obama’s Homeland Security Secretary is urging all those in the presidential line of succession to quarantine themselves because they’re in ‘sensitive’ positions, should anything happen to the president.
Jeh Johnson, 63, who served under former President Barack Obama from 2013 to 2017, spoke out on CNN and MSNBC on Friday, urging officials in power to take precautions as Donald Trump undergoes treatment for COVID-19.
On Friday evening Johnson spoke to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer suggesting the top half of those in the presidential line of succession should quarantine now as a precaution.
‘I think, respectfully, that those in the presidential line of succession, particularly the top half line of succession, should think very seriously about some form of quarantine for themselves while we’re in this period,’ Johnson said.
Those people in the top half of the line of succession, in order, are Vice President Mike Pence, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, President pro tempore of the Senate Chuck Grassley, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, and Attorney General William Barr.
Obama’s Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson urged all those in the presidential line of succession to quarantine themselves because they’re in ‘sensitive’ positions, should anything happen to the president, in an interview on CNN Friday night
Trump pictured giving a thumbs up as he walked to Marine One to be transported to the Walter Reed Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland for COVID-19 treatment Friday
‘This should be a wake up call for all of Americans that we’re still in the clutches of this invisible virus. And we see the numbers going up in a numbers of states. There’s a lot more than we need to do. We should not let our guard down,’ Johnson said.
‘The most secure American in this country gets this virus. None of us are safe. And we know how to deal with this – a simple mask,’ he added.
Vice President Mike Pence tested negative for COVID on Friday morning and is at the Naval Observatory where he lives.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi tested negative for COVID-19 on Friday, her staff tweeted.
She got tested following a meeting with Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin earlier this week to discuss a potential stimulus bill, after he was exposed to the president. Mnuchin, who is tested daily, proved negative on Friday morning as well.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (left) said Friday that he tested negative for the coronavirus. The diplomat announced his negative result to reporters traveling with him to Dubrovnik, Croatia, the last stop on a short European tour. Mnuchin (right), who is tested daily, proved negative on Friday morning as well
Defense Secretary Mark Esper, who is currently in North Africa, tested negative on Monday and Wednesday and said he’d be tested again on Friday. Pictured Friday speaking at a press conference with Morcco’s Foreign Affairs Minister in Rabat
Attorney General William Barr tested negative for COVID-19 on Friday morning
WHO HAS TRUMP BEEN IN CONTACT WITH AND WHO AMONG THEM IS INFECTED
Hope Hicks, counselor to the president – POSITIVE
Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump – NEGATIVE
Barron Trump – NEGATIVE
Tiffany Trump – NEGATIVE
Eric Trump, Lara Trump – NEGATIVE
Donald Trump Jr, Kimberly Guilfoyle – NEGATIVE
Vice President Mike Pence – NEGATIVE
Joe Biden and Jill Biden – NEGATIVE
Dan Scavino, Social Media Director – NEGATIVE
RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel – POSITIVE
Mark Meadows, White House chief of staff – NEGATIVE
Kayleigh McEnany, press secretary – NEGATIVE
KellyAnne Conway, Trump’s former advisor who attended Saturday’s announcement of SCOTUS nominee – POSITIVE
Amy Coney Barrett, Supreme Court nominee – NEGATIVE (She had the virus in the summer)
Rev John Jenkins, President of Notre Dame who attended Saturday’s announcement of SCOTUS nominee – POSITIVE
Republican Sen. Thom Tillis of North Carolina who attended Saturday’s announcement of SCOTUS nominee – POSITIVE
Mike Lee, Utah Republican senator who attended Saturday’s announcement of SCOTUS nominee – POSITIVE
Bill Stepien, campaign manager – POSITIVE
Chris Christie, helped with debate prep – POSITIVE
John McEntee, Director of the White House Presidential Personnel Office – UNKNOWN
Rudy Giuliani, personal attorney. Giuliani had spent the weekend at the White House doing debate prep – UNKNOWN
Mitch McConnell – UNKNOWN
Lindsey Graham – UNKNOWN
Robert Ford, CEO of Abbott Laboratories, who was at the White House on Monday – UNKNOWN
Admiral Brett Geroir, assistant Health and Human Services secretary – UNKNOWN
Alex Azar, HHS secretary – UNKNOWN
Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, who is the third in line of succession to the presidency, reportedly has not gotten a coronavirus test, despite attending a Senate Judiciary meeting with Sen. Mike Lee of Utah on Thursday.
Lee tested positive on Friday.
‘We are not aware of any exposure to anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19. Sen. Grassley will continue to follow guidance from the Senate’s attending physician, the CDC and local health officials,’ Grassley’s office said in a statement.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Friday that he tested negative for the coronavirus. The diplomat announced his negative result to reporters traveling with him to Dubrovnik, Croatia, the last stop on a short European tour. He has not interacted with Trump since the Abraham Accords were signed in Washington on September 15.
Defense Secretary Mark Esper, who is currently in North Africa, tested negative on Monday and Wednesday and said he’d be tested again on Friday.
Attorney General William Barr tested negative for COVID-19 on Friday morning.
President Donald Trump tweeted around 1am Friday that he and First Lady Melania Trump tested positive for COVID-19 after top aide Hope Hicks was diagnosed with the contagious virus.
Hicks had traveled closely with Trump this past week on the campaign trail.
Friday evening Trump was transported to the Walter Reed medical center in Bethesda, Maryland for treatment after reporting symptoms of a fever, cough, and congestion.
‘This morning, the president is doing very well. The team and I are extremely happy with the progress the president has made. He’s been fever free for 24 hours and we are cautiously optimistic,’ Trump’s personal physicial Sean Conley said Saturday morning in a press conference outside the hospital.
The vague health update sparked confusion regarding the timeline of Trump’s COVID-19 diagnosis and treament.
At the Saturday morning press conference Dr. Conley said the president is ’72 hours into the diagnosis’, indicating Trump could have tested positive as early as Wednesday, before walking back on his comment hours later.
If he was 72 hours into his diagnosis, that would mean Trump was positive a day after the presidential debate with Joe Biden and positive during a Minnesota rally Wednesday and a fundraising event in New Jersey attended by 100 people Thursday.
Immediately after Dr. Conley’s press conference a White House source said ‘on background’ that he misspoke, saying ‘The doctor meant it’s day 3, not yet 72hrs. Diagnosis made Thursday night.’
Hours later White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany issued a written statement from Dr. Conley saying he incorrectly used the term ‘seventy two hours’ instead of ‘day three’ and ‘forty eight hours’ instead of ‘day two’ with regards to his diagnosis and treatment.
The news conference skirted around the issue of the president’s temperature, if he ever required oxygen and the approximate date of when he last tested negative for the virus, making it hard to build a concrete timeline.