Virginia governor critical of Trump’s coronavirus response in first appearance since testing positive

About 65 staff members who had close contact with the Northams were told to ­self-isolate for two weeks. Northam said none tested positive, which he called “a testament” to the value of wearing masks.

He noted that masks protected several staff members who could not physically distance from him before he tested positive, including a press secretary, photographer and security detail who traveled in an SUV and airplane with Northam.

He contrasted that with the largely mask-free Rose Garden ceremony last month that Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious-disease expert, has called a superspreader event. Trump, first lady Melania Trump and several others subsequently tested positive for the virus.

“No masks, no social distancing — and look at the number of people that tested positive,” Northam said Tuesday, referring to the White House event. “We talk about science, it doesn’t get any clearer than that . . . I would remind every Virginian: Masks are scientifically proven to reduce the spread of this disease, plain and simple.”

Northam, a former Army doctor and pediatrician, said his and his wife’s symptoms were mild. He warned Virginians not to let down their guard, particularly as cooler fall temperatures and shrinking daylight hours make outdoor socializing less appealing.

The governor said he is unlikely to ease pandemic-related restrictions in the near term. He acknowledged pressure to return to in-person education at public schools but urged continued caution.

“Numbers are going up in a number of states across this country, so we’re not out of the woods,” he said. “We’re nowhere close to being out of the woods.”

The greater Washington region on Tuesday reported 1,763 additional coronavirus cases and 20 deaths. Virginia added 1,235 cases and 11 deaths, Maryland added 482 cases and nine deaths, and the District added 46 cases and no deaths.

Virginia’s daily caseload was above its rolling seven-day average, lifting that number to 1,089 — the state’s highest daily average since Aug. 13.

The seven-day average in Northern Virginia rose Tuesday to 264 cases, a four-month high in the region.

Daily caseloads Tuesday in Maryland and the District were below their rolling seven-day averages. It’s the third consecutive day that both jurisdictions reported new infections at or below their recent average amid an uptick that began earlier this month.

The recent caseload rise across the region has coincided with the outbreak at the White House, although local health officials have said it’s unclear whether there’s a connection.

Dana Hedgpeth contributed to this report.

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Trump’s Drug-Discount Cards Expected to Reach Medicare Recipients After Election

President Trump’s plan to send 33 million Medicare beneficiaries a card that can be used to help pay for as much as $200 in prescription drug costs won’t be completed until after the election, according to a person familiar with the plan.

The cards will be mailed in phases, with some likely going out later in October but most not until after the Nov. 3 presidential election, the person said. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is spending an estimated $20 million for administrative costs to print and send letters to Medicare beneficiaries informing them that they will be getting cards, the person said.

Plans for the overall drug-discount program have been sent to the Office for Management and Budget, the person said. It is unclear if or when the office will approve the program, which could cost $8 billion, the person said. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which oversees Medicare designed for people 65 and older, is unable to say exactly when the cards will go out because the proposal is still at OMB. Beneficiaries will have two years to use the discount cards, the person said.

Low-income beneficiaries who don’t already get financial assistance for medications would likely get the cards, according to the person familiar with the planning, rather than everyone in Medicare Part D, which helps cover prescription drug costs for people 65 and older.

Mr. Trump surprised his own health-administration leaders on Sept. 24 when he announced the plan to mail out prescription drug cards. The discount cards were proposed by White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, said an administration official.

CMS officials rushed to figure out how the program could be structured and designed, according to two people familiar with the planning.

The proposed plan calls for funding the cards from two Medicare trust funds, according to the administration official. It would run out of a CMS office that tests new models for providing or paying for health care.

The program lets officials waive Medicare’s laws or standards to test if new initiatives increase efficiency and “economy of programs” without adversely affecting quality, according to CMS. These waiver programs have generally been required to show they won’t increase federal spending beyond what would have occurred without the test.

The drug-discount-card plan, for example, could be designed to test if people are more adherent to medications if they are given a discount, according to the administration official.

Democrats and other critics have said providing discounts doesn’t fit with the parameters or goals of the program, and they say it is unwise to tap the Medicare trust funds at the same time one of the funds is facing insolvency concerns.

Medicare is funded by two trust funds held by the U.S. Treasury. The trusts pay for hospital care and to administer the federal health-insurance program for people 65 and older and the disabled. They are funded through payroll taxes, income taxes paid on Social Security benefits and other sources.

The Medicare trust

Pelosi Unveils 25th Amendment Bid, Questions Trump’s Fitness | Political News

By LISA MASCARO, AP Congressional Correspondent

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi unveiled legislation Friday that would allow Congress to intervene under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution to remove the president, insisting it’s not about President Donald Trump but inspired by the need for greater congressional oversight of his White House.

Pelosi has been raising questions about Trump’s mental fitness since his COVID-19 diagnosis and demanding more transparency about his health. The bill would set up a commission to assess the president’s ability to lead the country and ensure a continuity of government. It comes one year after Pelosi’s House launched impeachment proceedings against Trump.

“This is not about President Donald Trump — he will face the judgment of the voters,” Pelosi said at a press conference at the Capitol.

Just weeks before the Nov. 3 election, with no hopes of the bill becoming law, the rollout was quickly dismissed as a stunt by Trump’s team and top allies.

“It’s an absurd proposal,” said White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany on Fox.

“Absolutely absurd,” said Senate Majority Leader McConnell during an appearance in Shepherdsville, Kentucky.

The president’s opponents have discussed invoking the 25th Amendment for some time, but are raising it now, so close to Election Day, as the campaigns are fast turning into a referendum on Trump’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Pelosi said Trump needs to disclose more about his health after his COVID-19 diagnosis and when, exactly, he first contracted COVID as others in the White House have become infected. More than 210,000 Americans have died and millions more have tested positive for the virus, which shows no signs of abating heading into what public health experts warn will be a difficult flu season and winter.

The legislation that would create a commission as outlined under the 25th Amendment, which was passed by Congress and ratified in 1967 as a way to ensure a continuity of power in the aftermath of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination.

It says the vice president and a majority of principal officers of the executive departments “or of such other body as Congress” may by law provide a declaration to Congress that the president “is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.” At that point, the vice president would immediately assume the powers of acting president.

“Let Congress exert the power the Constitution gave us,” Pelosi said Friday standing before a poster of the amendment.

Pelosi was joined by Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., a constitutional scholar, who has proposed similar bills in the past.

“In times of chaos we must hold fast to our Constitution,” he said Friday.

Raskin said the commission would be launched “only for the most extreme situations.”

But, as Congress showed by impeaching — and acquitting the president over the past year — the legislative branch is determined to exert itself at times as a check on the executive branch.

“Congress has a role to play,” Raskin said.

Trump says he “feels great”

Pelosi unveils 25th Amendment bid, questions Trump’s fitness

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi unveiled legislation Friday that would allow Congress to intervene under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution to remove the president, insisting it’s not about President Donald Trump but inspired by the need for greater congressional oversight of his White House.



Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., speaks during a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Oct. 9, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)


© Provided by Associated Press
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., speaks during a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Oct. 9, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)



Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., listens as Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., speaks during a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Oct. 9, 2020. Pelosi wants legislation that would create a commission to allow Congress to intervene under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution and remove the president from executive duties. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)


© Provided by Associated Press
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., listens as Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., speaks during a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Oct. 9, 2020. Pelosi wants legislation that would create a commission to allow Congress to intervene under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution and remove the president from executive duties. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Pelosi has been raising questions about Trump’s mental fitness since his COVID-19 diagnosis and demanding more transparency about his health. The bill would set up a commission to assess the president’s ability to lead the country and ensure a continuity of government. It comes one year after Pelosi’s House launched impeachment proceedings against Trump.



Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., speaks during a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Oct. 9, 2020. Joined by Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., Pelosi wants legislation that would create a commission to allow Congress to intervene under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution and remove the president from executive duties. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)


© Provided by Associated Press
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., speaks during a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Oct. 9, 2020. Joined by Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., Pelosi wants legislation that would create a commission to allow Congress to intervene under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution and remove the president from executive duties. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

“This is not about President Donald Trump — he will face the judgment of the voters,” Pelosi said at a press conference at the Capitol.

Just weeks before the Nov. 3 election, with no hopes of the bill becoming law, the rollout was quickly dismissed as a stunt by Trump’s team and top allies.

“It’s an absurd proposal,” said White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany on Fox.

“Absolutely absurd,” said Senate Majority Leader McConnell during an appearance in Shepherdsville, Kentucky.

The president’s opponents have discussed invoking the 25th Amendment for some time, but are raising it now, so close to Election Day, as the campaigns are fast turning into a referendum on Trump’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Pelosi said Trump needs to disclose more about his health after his COVID-19 diagnosis and when, exactly, he first contracted COVID as others in the White House have become infected. More than 210,000 Americans have died and millions more have tested positive for the virus, which shows no signs of abating heading into what public health experts warn will be a difficult flu season and winter.

The legislation that would create a commission as outlined under the 25th Amendment, which was passed by Congress and ratified in 1967 as a way to ensure a continuity of power in the aftermath of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination.

In 25th Amendment bid, Pelosi mulls Trump’s fitness to serve

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It says the vice

Trump’s Physician Says He Is ‘Safe’ to Begin ‘Public Engagements’ on Saturday

The president is saying that he feels “great.” He is saying that the heavy steroid he is on is “not a heavy steroid.” He is saying lucid things on the White House lawn, like: “We’re taking care of our seniors, you’re not vulnerable, but they like to say ‘the vulnerable,’ but you’re the least vulnerable, but for this one thing you are vulnerable.”



a man standing in front of a cloudy blue sky: Getty Images


© Getty Images
Getty Images

On Thursday night, President Trump’s physician agreed with the gist of his recent comments on his own health. In a memo, Dr. Sean Conley stated that “based on the trajectory of advanced diagnostics the team has been conducting, I fully anticipate the President’s safe return to public engagements by Saturday,” which will have been 10 days since his positive coronavirus test was announced.

A bounty of questions remain. On Thursday, in the same interview in which he told Fox Business Network that the parents of soldiers killed in action may have given him COVID-19, he said that he would be taking dexamethasone for a “little bit longer.” How will Trump feel once he’s off a steroid that is known for giving patients boosts of energy and bouts of euphoria? Will Americans without the benefit of his taxpayer-subsidized health-care gain access to Regeneron, a drug Trump has called a “cure” — and a drug that was developed using tests on fetal tissue derived from abortion, a process that the Trump administration suspended federal funding for in June 2019. Will the White House actually take its pandemic precautions seriously now that around three dozen patients have been infected during its outbreak? Most importantly, will Trump be test negative and be non-contagious by the weekend? Dr. Conley’s letter notably does not address whether or not the president is still testing positive. Judging from the administration’s opacity during the crisis so far, most of these questions will remain unanswered.

As Trump waits to break his entirely porous quarantine, he is keeping busy.

On Thursday, he spent an hour on the phone with Fox Business and on Friday, the president — having cleared his workload, apparently — will guest-host Rush Limbaugh’s three-hour radio show.

On Hannity on Thursday night, Trump gave a preview of his weekend plans — in between baselessly claiming that Virginia Governor Ralph Northam had “executed a baby” and condemning Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer for not calling to thank him after the FBI foiled a domestic terrorist plot to kidnap her. The president told the Fox News host that he is now planning to hold a rally in Florida on Saturday, his first night back on the town.

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In 25th Amendment Bid, Pelosi Mulls Trump’s Fitness to Serve | Health News

By LISA MASCARO, AP Congressional Correspondent

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is questioning President Donald Trump’s fitness to serve, announcing legislation Thursday that would create a commission to allow Congress to intervene under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution and remove the president from executive duties.

Just weeks before the Nov. 3 election, Pelosi said Trump needs to disclose more about his health after his COVID-19 diagnosis. She noted Trump’s “strange tweet” halting talks on a new coronavirus aid package — he subsequently tried to reverse course — and said Americans need to know when, exactly, he first contracted COVID as others in the White House became infected. On Friday, she plans to roll out the legislation that would launch the commission for review.

“The public needs to know the health condition of the president,” Pelosi said, later invoking the 25th Amendment, which allows a president’s cabinet or Congress to intervene when a president is unable to conduct the duties of the office.

Trump responded swiftly via Twitter.

“Crazy Nancy is the one who should be under observation. They don’t call her Crazy for nothing!” the president said.

The president’s opponents have discussed invoking the 25th Amendment for some time, but are raising it now, so close to Election Day, as the campaigns are fast turning into a referendum on Trump’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic. More than 210,000 Americans have died and millions more infected by the virus that shows no signs of abating heading into what public health experts warn will be a difficult flu season and winter.

Trump says he “feels great” after being hospitalized and is back at work in the White House. But his doctors have given mixed signals about his diagnosis and treatment. Trump plans to resume campaigning soon.

Congress is not in legislative session, and so any serious consideration of the measure, let alone votes in the House or Senate, is unlikely. But the bill serves as a political tool to stoke questions about Trump’s health as his own White House is hit by an outbreak infecting top aides, staff and visitors, including senators.

In a stunning admission, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday that he had stopped going to the White House two months ago because he disagreed with its coronavirus protocols. His last visit was Aug. 6.

“My impression was their approach to how to handle this was different from mine and what I insisted we do in the Senate, which is to wear a mask and practice social distancing,” McConnell said at a campaign stop in northern Kentucky for his own reelection.

On Friday, Pelosi along with Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., a constitutional law professor, plan to roll out the legislation that would create a commission as outlined under the 25th Amendment, which was passed by Congress and ratified in 1967 as way to ensure a continuity of power in the aftermath of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination.

It says the vice president and a majority of

Trump’s COVID drug was developed using aborted fetal tissue

The antibody cocktail that President Trump received for his COVID-19 infection and touted on Wednesday evening as a “cure” for the deadly virus was developed using cells derived from aborted fetal tissue, a practice the White House and anti-abortion rights groups oppose.



Amanda Banks, Alveda King, Donald Trump standing in front of a crowd holding a sign: Anti-Abortion Activists Demonstrate In D.C. During Annual March For Life


© Mark Wilson / Getty Images
Anti-Abortion Activists Demonstrate In D.C. During Annual March For Life

Last week, Mr. Trump received Regeneron Pharmaceuticals’ cocktail of monoclonal antibodies, an experimental therapeutic for coronavirus that is still undergoing testing and is not FDA approved. In a nearly five-minute video posted to Twitter on Wednesday, the president lauded its effects, calling it “the key.”

“I think this was a blessing from God that I caught [the virus], I think it was a blessing in disguise,” Mr. Trump said in the video. “I caught it, I heard about this drug, I said, ‘Let me take it’ … and it was incredible the way it worked.”

But the way in which the antibody cocktail was developed is at odds with the Trump administration’s position on stem cell research. The drug’s potency was tested in a lab using HEK 293T cells, a cell line originally derived from the kidney tissue of a fetus aborted in the Netherlands in the 1970s, said a spokesperson for Regeneron in an email to CBS News on Thursday. The cells “were used in testing the antibody candidates’ ability to neutralize the virus” and helped researchers “determine the ‘best’ two antibodies, which now make up the REGN-COV2 cocktail,” the spokesperson said.  

Doctor discusses President Trump’s health, treatments, and comments calling therapeutics a cure

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There is no fetal tissue present in the final product.

Remdesivir, an antiviral drug Mr. Trump received, also was tested using the HEK 293T cells.

Last year, the Trump administration said it would no longer support long-standing funding for medical research by government scientists using human fetal tissue, a move that countered advice from physicians and researchers. The decision was seen as a major victory for anti-abortion rights groups.

Because the fetal cells used in developing Regeneron’s antibody cocktail were originally derived from an abortion prior to the funding ban, a White House official told CBS News on Thursday that the therapeutic wasn’t in violation of the administration’s new policy.

“The Administration’s policy on the use of human fetal tissue from elective abortions in research specifically excluded ‘already-established (as of June 5, 2019) human fetal cell lines,” the official said. “Thus, a product made using extant cell lines that existed before June 5, 2019 would not implicate the Administration’s policy.”

Video: COVID Vaccine Trials Lacking Minority Participants (CBS Sacramento)

COVID Vaccine Trials Lacking Minority Participants

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Anti-abortion groups, which generally oppose the use of fetal tissue in pharmaceutical research, did not raise issue with the therapeutics used and promoted by the president.

“The president was not given any medicines to treat COVID-19 that involved the destruction of human life,” wrote David Prentice, Ph.D., and Tara Sander

In 25th Amendment bid, Pelosi mulls Trump’s fitness to serve

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., meets with reporters at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 8, 2020. Negotiations between Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin for an additional coronavirus aid package were abruptly halted last week by President Donald Trump.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., meets with reporters at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 8, 2020. Negotiations between Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin for an additional coronavirus aid package were abruptly halted last week by President Donald Trump.

AP

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is questioning President Donald Trump’s fitness to serve, announcing legislation Thursday that would create a commission to allow Congress to intervene under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution and remove the president from executive duties.

Just weeks before the Nov. 3 election, Pelosi said Trump needs to disclose more about his health after his COVID-19 diagnosis. She raised the idea of invoking the 25th Amendment, which allows a president’s Cabinet or Congress to intervene when a president is unable to conduct the duties of the office.

On Friday, she planned to roll out the legislation that would launch the commission for review.

Trump responded swiftly via Twitter.

“Crazy Nancy is the one who should be under observation. They don’t call her Crazy for nothing!” the president said.

His opponents have discussed invoking the 25th Amendment for some time, but are raising it now, so close to Election Day, as questions swirl about the president’s health. Trump says he “feels great” after being hospitalized and is back at work in the White House. But his doctors have given mixed signals about his diagnosis and treatment. Trump plans to resume campaigning soon.

Congress is not in legislative session, and so any serious consideration of the measure, let alone votes in the House or Senate, is unlikely. But the bill serves as a political tool to stoke questions about Trump’s health during the coronavirus pandemic.

The bill would create a commission as outlined under the 25th Amendment, which was passed by Congress and ratified in 1967 as way to ensure a continuity of power in the aftermath of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination.

It says the vice president and a majority of principal officers of the executive departments “or of such other body as Congress” may by law provide a declaration to Congress that the president “is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.” At that point, the vice president would immediately assume the powers of acting president.

Pelosi’s move came after she said earlier Thursday that she was “at the table” still ready to negotiate a coronavirus aid package. Trump had abruptly halted talks this week, leaving the economy reeling, his GOP allies scrambling and millions of Americans without additional support weeks before Election Day.

Pelosi said she told Trump’s chief negotiator, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, she was willing to consider a measure to prop up the airline industry, which is facing widespread layoffs. But that aid, she said, must go alongside broader legislation that includes the kind of COVID testing, tracing and health practices that Democrats say are needed as part of a national strategy to “crush the virus.”

“Lives are at stake,” Pelosi said at the

In 25th Amendment bid, Pelosi mulls Trump’s fitness to serve

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is questioning President Donald Trump’s fitness to serve, announcing legislation Thursday that would create a commission to allow Congress to intervene under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution and remove the president from executive duties.

Just weeks before the Nov. 3 election, Pelosi said Trump needs to disclose more about his health after his COVID-19 diagnosis. She raised the idea of invoking the 25th Amendment, which allows a president’s Cabinet or Congress to intervene when a president is unable to conduct the duties of the office.

On Friday, she planned to roll out the legislation that would launch the commission for review.


Trump responded swiftly via Twitter.

“Crazy Nancy is the one who should be under observation. They don’t call her Crazy for nothing!” the president said.

His opponents have discussed invoking the 25th Amendment for some time, but are raising it now, so close to Election Day, as questions swirl about the president’s health. Trump says he “feels great” after being hospitalized and is back at work in the White House. But his doctors have given mixed signals about his diagnosis and treatment. Trump plans to resume campaigning soon.

Congress is not in legislative session, and so any serious consideration of the measure, let alone votes in the House or Senate, is unlikely. But the bill serves as a political tool to stoke questions about Trump’s health during the coronavirus pandemic.

The bill would create a commission as outlined under the 25th Amendment, which was passed by Congress and ratified in 1967 as way to ensure a continuity of power in the aftermath of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination.

It says the vice president and a majority of principal officers of the executive departments “or of such other body as Congress” may by law provide a declaration to Congress that the president “is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.” At that point, the vice president would immediately assume the powers of acting president.

Pelosi’s move came after she said earlier Thursday that she was “at the table” still ready to negotiate a coronavirus aid package. Trump had abruptly halted talks this week, leaving the economy reeling, his GOP allies scrambling and millions of Americans without additional support weeks before Election Day.

Pelosi said she told Trump’s chief negotiator, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, she was willing to consider a measure to prop up the airline industry, which is facing widespread layoffs. But that aid, she said, must go alongside broader legislation that includes the kind of COVID testing, tracing and health practices that Democrats say are needed as part of a national strategy to “crush the virus.”

“Lives are at stake,” Pelosi said at the Capitol. “This is deadly serious.”

In a stunning admission, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday that he had stopped going to the White House two months ago because he disagreed with its coronavirus protocols. His last visit was Aug. 6.

“My impression was

Analyzing Trump’s illness is humbling for media’s med teams

NEW YORK (AP) — Here’s an assignment to humble even the most confident doctor: Assess a patient’s condition before millions of people without being able to examine him or see a complete medical chart.

That, in effect, is what medical experts at news organizations have been asked to do since President Donald Trump revealed Friday that he had tested positive for COVID-19.

They have a fine line to walk, needing to decide what level of speculation — if any — that they’re comfortable with, how much to read into medications the president has been prescribed and how to explain the course of a virus so new that it still confounds the people who study it.

“You try to put the pieces of the puzzle together,” said CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta, who logged hours comparable to his residency days in the wake of Trump’s announcement.

A second or third opinion is only a click away. The question of whether Trump developed COVID 19-related pneumonia is one example of how media experts have differed despite access to the same information.


All would like to see images of Trump’s lungs, but they haven’t been made available. Dr. Vin Gupta (no relation to Sanjay), a pulmonologist who treats coronavirus patients and reports for NBC News, is confident that Trump has pneumonia because the president has had shortness of breath, low oxygen levels in his blood and has COVID-19.

CBS News’ Dr. John LaPook is less definitive, but believes that’s the case “because if he had a chest x-ray and it was normal, they would be shouting it from the rooftops.”

But Dr. Jen Ashton, ABC News’ chief medical correspondent, said that would be “quintessential speculation” because the president’s medical team hasn’t made that diagnosis publicly. His doctors said there were some pulmonary findings on imaging tests, but there are other things that could mean besides pneumonia.

“We don’t know what the findings were, and that is precisely why I didn’t jump to conclusions,” Ashton said.

For Vin Gupta, however, “this is my wheelhouse.

“What might be speculative for another journalist, for me there’s a level of concreteness that I feel exists that I try to pass along,” he said.

Ashton also objects to how some in the media have pinned percentages on Trump’s likely survival. Dr. Martin Makary said on Fox News Channel that Trump had a 99.4 percent chance of surviving COVID-19; CNN’s Gupta said it’s “90 to 95 percent” that he’ll get through.

“This has been very, very challenging,” Ashton said. “The way that I’ve handled this is that I do not speculate. And one of my pet peeves in this story, as it is in all medical media, is when everyone with an ‘MD’ after their name thinks that they can offer inside baseball.”

Imagine the confusion visitors to newsstands in Massachusetts might have felt on Monday. “Trump is improving, doctors say,” was the banner headline on the Wall Street Journal. “Fresh concerns on Trump’s health,” headlined the Boston Globe.

The