President Trump considered staging his own Clark Kent moment as he exited last week from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center by ripping open a button-down to reveal a Superman T-shirt underneath, according to The New York Times.
The Times reported on Saturday that during several phone calls from inside the hospital last weekend, Trump shared the idea of appearing frail when he emerged from the facility then exposing the Superman t-shirt underneath his top layer, which he described as a symbol of strength, according to sources with knowledge of the conversations.
Trump reportedly spoke about the idea on multiple phone calls. In the end, the president did not go along with the move.
The report from the Times came on the same day Trump made his first public appearance on Saturday since returning to the White House from Walter Reed on Monday after a three-night stay following his COVID-19 diagnosis.
The Times reported the president, who spoke for less than 20 minutes on Saturday, also had a bandage on his hand, which it noted was “a reminder of the treatments and infusions” he has gotten in recent days.
Trump’s doctors have said he was given a steroid, an antiviral drug and an experimental antibody therapy during his treatment of the highly infectious disease.
The day before his left Walter Reed, Trump was criticized for leaving the facility to wave at supporters from an SUV with two Secret Service agents in the front seat.
Upon returning to the White House the following day on Monday, Trump also got heat for posing for photos on the balcony without a mask, then entering the residence without a face covering.
Just days before, Trump was reported to be exhibiting fatigue and fever. He also had been given supplemental oxygen before and during his stay at Walter Reed, his doctors said during a weekend of conflicting updates on the president’s health.