Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden called for greater transparency after President Trump tested positive for COVID-19.
“Every single American deserves safety and peace of mind, and it means we need transparency,” he said Friday in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
The former two-term vice president added: “Those who test positive need to participate in contact tracing so that everyone who they may have exposed can get tested themselves. That’s how you stop transmission for any epidemic. It’s basic.”
Trump revealed his COVID-19 diagnosis in an overnight tweet, but news top aide Hope Hicks had contracted the virus Wednesday wasn’t disclosed by the White House. Instead, that development was uncovered by Bloomberg News late Thursday.
But roughly 30 days before their Nov. 3 election, Biden insisted Trump’s positive test results were “not a matter of politics.”
“It’s a bracing reminder to all of us that we have to take this virus seriously. It’s not going away automatically,” he said, urging Trump and his administration to rely on science in their pandemic response.
In addition to increased access to testing, the 36-year Delaware senator implored Trump again to encourage people to wear masks.
“Be patriotic. It’s not about being a tough guy. It’s about doing your part,” he said.
Biden flew to Michigan Friday afternoon for a scaled-back campaign swing after he and wife Jill, the former second lady, tested negative for COVID-19. At the United Food & Commercial Workers hall, Biden told the socially distanced crowd he actually took two COVID-19 tests that morning.
Biden’s trip was originally scheduled so that he could deliver remarks regarding the economy, coinciding with Friday’s publication of the Labor Department’s October jobs report. The data, which indicated the country’s economic recovery slowed in September, is the last report expected before Election Day.
Biden shared a stage with Trump for 90 minutes on Tuesday when they went head-to-head in their opening debate in Cleveland. Hicks was in the audience, many of whom ignored guidance from the host site to don a face covering.
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