A reporter who covered President Donald Trump’s controversial campaign rally in Tulsa last weekend has tested positive for the new coronavirus. Paul Monies, who writes for the investigative outlet Oklahoma Watch, wrote on Twitter on Friday, “Friends, I tested positive for #COVID19. I’m pretty surprised. I have zero symptoms (so far) and I feel fine. In fact, I ran 5 miles this morning.” He said he called those with whom he had come into contact since then so as to alert them to get tested.
Coronavirus cases are on the rise again in the United States as more locales reopen for pre-pandemic levels of business as usual. Trump’s own public health experts advised him against holding the rally and warned the public not to attend. Vice President Mike Pence defended the decision Friday at a coronavirus-related press conference, saying Americans’ freedom of assembly was not suspended during the pandemic. Dozens of Secret Service officers have gone into quarantine since attending the rally as a precaution, and eight members of Trump’s own campaign staff have tested positive.