this is bbc news. an october surprise like no other, the trump campaign clears the president's schedule after he tests positive for coronavirus. butjoe biden, the man he's repeatedly mocked for being frail and over cautious about his health, will continue on the trail. with just over a month until election day, president trump and his wife melania are now isolating in the white house. in a cruel twist of fate, the president's positive test came only hours after he delivered this upbeat message about the pandemic. ijust want to say that the end of the pandemic is in sight and next year will be one of the greatest years in the history of our country.
the president is said to be in good spirits, and his aides insist he's still working. and we've learnt in the past hour that the vice presidential debate between mike pence and kamala harris will go ahead as planned. hello, i'm katty kay in washington. christian fraser is in london. there's been a seismic collision of forces in recent hours involving a pandemic, the personal health of an american president and a healthy dose of politics. at about 1am last night here in washington, as many of us were sleeping, president trump tweeted that he and first lady melania trump had tested positive for covid—19. that kicked off an avalanche of events that are set to continue through election day. now, we should note, democrats and republicans, world leaders and others have come out to wish the president a speedy recovery. but this is a president that initially played down the seriousness of coronavirus. he's held large rallies. he's made jokes about masks. and yesterday, despite being told that senior aide hope hicks
had tested posititive, he went ahead with a trip to new jersey anyway. here's our north american editorjon sopel. as you know, tonight's al smith dinner.... last night, one of the great pre—election traditions, the president attending the al smith dinner, where donald trump addressed the coronavirus pandemic with what now appears to be grim irony. "the worst was behind us," he said. and i just want to say that the end of the pandemic is in sight and next year will be one of the greatest years in the history of our country. but then later that evening came a bombshell statement that will reverberate around the world, the most serious health issue to affect a serving president in decades. he tweeted. .. today, the president's chief of staff gave reporters this update. the president and the first lady tested positive for covid—19.
they remain in good spirits. the president does have mild symptoms. a hint of something being wrong came earlier in the evening last night when it was announced that this woman, hope hicks, had contracted the virus. on wednesday, she was part of the inner circle to travel with the president on the cramped marine one helicopter. none of them is wearing a mask. as donald trump seemed to dance with joy at the rally in duluth, minnesota, she'd become symptomatic and was quarantined on air force one for the return journey to washington. the ripples of concern will reach everyone who's been in close contact with the president, not leastjoe biden, who shared a debate stage with him for a shouty 90 minutes on tuesday night, a debate where the president ripped into the democratic candidate for his mask—wearing. i don't wear a mask like him. every time you see him, he's got a mask. he could be speaking 200 feet away, and he shows up with the biggest mask i've ever seen.
and it was noticeable that none of the trump entourage wore face coverings. that actually violated the rules of the cleveland clinic, which was in charge of all the safety issues inside the hall, which were that everybody except for the president, the vice president and i were not supposed to wear masks... i mean, were supposed to wear masks. the president has worn masks in public on less than a handful of occasions, and his ambivalence towards them is evident. can you take it off? because i can't hear you. i'll just speak louder, sir. oh, ok, you want to be politically correct. i just don't want to wear one myself. it's a recommendation. they recommend it. i'm feeling good. and he's been holding rallies as though covid was in the rear—view mirror, with thousands turning up, no attempts at social distancing, few wearing masks. last night, from the president's physician sean conley, a seemingly upbeat assessment.
today, messages of support from around the world. this from borisjohnson, who's been where the president is now. obviously, i think we all want to send our best wishes to the president and the first lady, and i've done that this morning, as you can imagine. and i'm sure that they'll both stage a very strong recovery. and messages of support, too, from political rivals. joe biden wrote... this is first and foremost a medical issue for the president and his wife, but it's upended a presidential election campaign that needed no further agitation, with many questions begged and few answers to give at this early stage. jon sopel, bbc news,
at the white house. let's get more now on the news of president trump's positive covid result from our senior north america reporter anthony zurcher. there is quite a lot of pressure on the white house to give a more detailed statement about the president's health. we saw this as an issue when borisjohnson first got sick that there was some suggestion they were minimising the health symptoms and people now say she of the president's doctor come out and address the public if the president does not himself tell us how he is feeling exactly. could we expect to get more details on how he is doing? i think the white house is going to be under increasing pressure to do so. in the past there have been questions about donald trump oz might help. there was a surprise trip to bethesda hospital la st surprise trip to bethesda hospital last year that the white house explained after the fact as being preliminary and part of his routine physical. questions still linger around that. and so anything that
the white house does not say will raise skepticism from the public and from the media about what exactly is going on. and i think uncertainty, doubt is the real enemy here because of social media and because of the propensity of people having conspiracy theories, the longer it goes without the president making a statement or even being on twitter today so far, it will raise concerns. so the vice president... the president is isolating obviously so the president is isolating obviously so he will not be doing any rallies but we have heard anthony recently that the vice president in the debate between mike pence and kamala harris, that will go ahead. will that be it in serve a big campaign events over the next week or two?- least in a public inside, i think it will have to be. mike pence might still travel. joe biden of course we nt still travel. joe biden of course went to michigan today and it's holding a campaign event there. so oi'i holding a campaign event there. so on the democratic side, they are
continuing to stick with their routine. christian, you me a question last hour about whether this might help donald trump but i did give it some thought. because donald trump may be by keeping a lower profile for a while actually help himself out that way. some of the biggest controversies that he has been and have been of his own making so if he takes a lower profile, perhaps that will lead the campaign regain some footing where in the past donald trump has disrupted things much to his own detriment. that that is a big factor. a line of breaking news and now nancy pelosi came of the us figure of the house, has been meeting with the secretary of the treasury in recent days, she has tested negative. that is not mean she does not have it because we know there is that risk of a false negative and at the early stages of the virus, of course, you might not have the viral load that shows up in a test so they still have to be a little bit careful. and on that measure, just talk to us about the enormous contact tracing operation
and must now be under way. enormous contact tracing operation and must now be under waym enormous contact tracing operation and must now be under way. if you look at his schedule over this past week. trips to minnesota, trips to ohio, trips to florida, virginia, north carolina, he had been keeping a very active schedule. and of course hope hicks had accompanied him on air force one on several of those of the amount of exposure the president has had to staff, to campaign staff, to supporters, to donors when he was in newjersey just yesterday, being able to track this done and figure out exactly who the president has been an proximity to... again on saturday apparently you had the announcement of the supreme court nomination and there we re supreme court nomination and there were several people there who have since tested positive for the coronavirus. so it is a massive undertaking to try to get the administration's head around all of this we are talking about the highest echelons of power in washington. so this is very serious business. 0k, anthony, thank you
very much. we are getting reports that i think it is two more members of the white house press corps who have tested positive as well for keeping an eye on that as well. so ata minimum keeping an eye on that as well. so at a minimum there are ten days of isolation for the president so let's ta ke isolation for the president so let's take a look then at the political calendarfor take a look then at the political calendar for october. wednesday, kamala harris and mike pence will be taking part in the vice presidential debate. republican leaders in the senate have confirmed they still plan to go ahead on october the 12th with the supreme court hearings before the senate judiciary committee. that's three days before the second presidential debate in florida, the 15th of october. the commission on presidential debates had no comment today on whether that will be cancelled. a week later, we could have the final presidential debate in tennessee. election day is then on tuesday, november the 3rd. earlier, we spoke to former white house communications director anthony scaramucci. what do you think this does to the campaign for the next few weeks?
well, they're scrambling, and unfortunately for them, it does cripple the campaign because the president gets a lot of his energy from these rallies and he's behind in a lot of battle ground states and they were planning on his visits boosting him in those states. i think it's very hard for the president over a virtual situation. he gets bored pretty easily, and so i don't see how that will work for him. ijust want to say i hope him and mrs trump and hope hicks recover very quickly. nobody wants to see anybody sick. but there is a level of incompetence that has taken place here that has to be addressed in terms of the way he's handled the virus and the way he's lied about the science and the way he has put people in harm's way, his family members and his support staff and his supporters for that matter. because he really has sent
a message of the culture inside the white house that people are frowned upon if they're not maskless inside the white house. you've worked there, and i have been there several times. it's super—tight and small in the west wing of the white house. you are right up against people. the chances of it being a place where this could spread seem to me pretty high. well, yeah. and air force one, look at the cabins inside, it is even smaller. so, my heart goes out to the family, but you have to think about the tens of thousands of lives that could still be here if we had just handled this better, so i think that has to be litigated over the next month and i think it will be and there's a certain level of symbolism here that the president himself has gotten the virus, primarily related to his malfeasance in the way he's handled the situation in terms of not taking it seriously enough. i want to come back to what katty was just saying there about the white house.
actually, we've got a floor plan of the first floor. i gives an impression ofjust how tight it is. you have this impression that it's a sprawling place the west wing, but actually, you have an office, hope hicks right next door to jared kushner, almost opposite the vice president, and then you don't have ventilation like you would have in a modern building. no, the building was built in 1909. it's had air conditioning issues over the last 100—plus years. they did a renovation of the building in august of 2017, but i don't think they have the scrubbers in that building they would have on an aeroplane let's say, so it is tight quarters. but the president is a middle school bully, he's setting the rules against the rules of science, and he's forcing the people that are sitting at his lunch table to abide by his rules. and of course, pursuant to what epidemiologists would say, the risks for those
people are high and many of them unfortunately now have the virus. we have talked together about what message the president the president wanted to push in this campaign. he didn't want to be talking about the coronavirus, sadly for him it will be front and centre now for the running to the vote. he didn't want to be talking about the coronavirus, and trust me, he has it. all these conspiracy theories that says he doesn't, but my friends in the white house tell me but also i know the president. he would never put himself off the playing field for this long if he didn't have the virus. it's unfortunate, by the way, because i would like the free marketplace of ideas and the litigation of what has gone on over the last four years to be front and centre in the campaign and let there be a full free market—based referendum on it. i would like to talk about the racism, i would like to talk about the voter suppression, the destruction of the institutions of our democracy, so we can really showcase to the american people what he has done over the last three and a half years. he has lied about the science,
he's made the country weaker, he's made the country sicker and poorer, and in a weird way, the covid—19 diagnosis is overshadowing things like the tax issue and some of the other systemic issues that we have to continue to bring forward to the american people right now. anthony scaramucci there, the former white house communications director. for those watching on bbc world news, we'll be right back. scotland's first minister, nicola sturgeon, has called on the mp margaret ferrier to resign after she travelled from london back to scotland this week knowing she had tested positive for covid. ms ferrier, who has been suspended from the snp, of the political spectrum. has received a barrage of criticism for her actions from all sides of the political spectrum. nicola sturgeon described margaret ferrier as a "friend", but said that her actions were indefensible. now, people contact me and say, "why don't you just sack her7" and this is a point that
i have to make clear — i don't have the power to force an mp to step down. no party leader has that power. but i can make my views known, difficult though it is, and i have done so. and i hope she will come to the right decision in the interests of the overall integrity of these vital public health messages. first minister of scotland nicola sturgeon. and it's emerged tonight that the metropolitan police has launched an investigation. it's well known that the older you are and the heavier you are, the more at risk you are of having serious complications. our medical editor fergus walsh looks at the risk to president trump's health. donald trump has several factors which raise his risk profile for coronavirus — his age, weight and being a man. at 7a, he's often insisted how
healthy he is, despite a love of burgers and hot dogs. age is the biggest risk factorfor covid—19. in the united states, eight out of ten deaths have been among the over—65s. the risk of dying for somebody aged 65—74 is 90 times higher than for someone in their 20s. now, to put that in context, a recent international study found that once infected with coronavirus, the chances of dying were around one in 100 at age 65, one in 25 at 75 and one in seven at 85. the first lady, melania trump, is just 50, 2a years younger than donald trump, and physically fit, so her risks from covid should be low. the president is six foot three
and weighs more than 17 stone, putting him in the obese category, another red flag. his medical team will be on constant guard for any change in his condition. often patients have quite mild symptoms to start with, and then it's as if they drop off a cliff and suddenly it gets worse, and that can happen really within hours. i don't think they can be sure for approximately ten days. if then he really hasn't really developed any worse symptoms, he seems to be controlling the virus in his throat and his nose, then i think they will relax. it was nine days after testing positive for coronavirus before boris johnson was admitted to hospital in early april. he spent three nights in intensive care and says the nhs saved his life. another leader who got covid was president bolsonaro of brazil. he had few symptoms and dismissed
the virus as a measly cold. it's impossible to predict how any individual will cope with covid. many people never develop any symptoms at all. and there are treatments now which have helped improve survival rates for what can be a brutal disease. fergus walsh, bbc news. for the medical situation is clearly different from when boris johnson got it. i want to give you some news that has come into us from the president's physician who has released the following statement. he says as of this afternoon the president remains fatigued but is in good spirits. he is in evaluation by a team of experts and we are making together recommendations to the president and the first lady in regards to the next best step. also some of what the president has been treated with. let's go now to portland, where we're joined by dr esther choo, who's professor of emergency medicine at oregon health
and science university. thank you very much forjoining us. i wanted to read to you what the president has been treated with. he has been given a single eight grams dose of an antibody cocktail and he has also been given zinc, vitamin d, melatonin and a daily aspirin. anything you can read into the president's health given what he has been treated with? it is hard to know, just hearing for the first time myself. it is hard to reconcile the fact that we are told he is doing very well and he is getting aggressive treatments that a regular person would not be getting. so hearing that he is fatigued without any other details of the symptoms and then hearing that they are going pretty aggressively and initiating treatment when he is not so symptomatic he needs to go to the hospital is simply interesting. and it shows that... so you would describe that for us who were not
doctors as fairly aggressive treatment for somebody who has been described as feeling just fatigued and with only mild symptoms? described as feeling just fatigued and with only mild symptoms7m described as feeling just fatigued and with only mild symptoms? it is certainly not standard treatment and when what we are doing for the average person when what we are doing for the ave rage person who when what we are doing for the average person who is doing well and just tested positive with covid—19 without needing to escalate their treatment and going to the hospital. so it certainly he is getting a cocktail of medications that the average american or anybody else would not be getting. that is the point, doctor, that is will is all of therapeutics and can benefit from which other patients will be able to benefit from, if needed to push the bow on this, they would be able to prescribe presumably unlicensed medications which are in the pipeline because he is the president of the us. i certainly feel like there will be more leeway to kind of throw in the kitchen sink and i will also say that if not necessarily a good thing. we have a whole literature on the fact that vip
patients, these special people who have importance on a different scale than other patients, sometimes actually suffer harm because we try to be so aggressive. so being outside of regular practice can also be harmful. so i think it's important to remember that the downside to all of these therapeutics that don't have solid evidence based efficacy is it we also don't know their harms. so not necessarily better to get more earlier when it's not indicated. but i certainly would be interested to hear a lot more about how the doctors made the decisions, what he looks like clinically, if they are deciding to really step up there therapeutics and try out—of—the—box things. is it something they could continue doing at the white house? could they continue to treat him there? or would they need to move him if he got worse to hospital?
again, it really depends on what he is doing clinically. if he is looking fine and stable and is not needing respiratory support for breathing issues, i'm sure there is what they can do with the white house. again they could probably do more for the president at the white house and he would try to do for an average person at home. if he is starting to become symptomatic and within there will be a time when he needs to go to the hospital and actually a lot of the evidence—based therapies and things like ribbed is and steroids are things we tend to start on patients who are quite ill come ill, the oxygen support and things like that, those generally need to be started in a hospital where you can do the kind of monitoring and therapy that we think of when patients are sicker and need advanced care for more serious symptoms. but it's hard to figure out exactly what is going on when we hear from the white house physician that he is only a little fatigued.
of course we don't know what he is being treated aggressively because he's the president or whether he is because his symptoms are actually worse to have been initially stated. but just to be worse to have been initially stated. butjust to be clear, doctor, the situation since borisjohnson for example got the coronavirus back in the spring in terms of therapeutics and treatments and how they live patients etc, it is gotten much better, has it not? yes, we know that things in aggregate are working. and i think it's hard to sort of sort out right now exactly what is working. i think it is clear there is no one magic bullet but in aggregate we are recognising patients who have covid—19 earlier and are doing diagnostics faster and more of them. we are applying oxygen in prone positioning that you refer to where they roll on their bellies to where they roll on their bellies to optimise oxygenation. we have some new medications that have shown some new medications that have shown some efficacy in reducing the disease like ribbed is severe and we are using steroids more aggressively
andi are using steroids more aggressively and i think altogether thus be much more confident in that whole package of treatments, we are seeing huge improvements in mortality and people who get quite ill. like boris johnson was. ok, thank you very much indeed for that. interesting how the message it shifted a bit through the day because we heard from the press secretary earlier that they had to calm them down and take his foot off the pedal and now we are hearing that he is fatigued and his aunt and he said at the top, it's been 15 hours since he last waited. a reminder when we talk about his health that actually the health of an american president is not a private affair. no, it is a public issue and i think these calls we are hearing for the physicians to actually come out and make some kind of statement on camera are going to get louder because there is an issue of trust around this white house people do feel they don't always get the story exactly as it is. and when it comes to the president's health, are we being told and we have seen
this before with other world leaders the public wants to know. in the trust factor is very important in ability to handle this is a country. we will be right back. hello again. it was a lovely day today across scotland where we had the blue skies. tomorrow, the skies are going to look very different, and that's because the wet and windy weather that we've had further south is going to develop more widely this weekend. it's the rain that's going to be the issue. there's likely to be some flooding, some travel disruption, although there will be strong winds at times. and earlier today, this morning, we had some very windy weather through the english channel from storm alex. that has weakened and is getting consumed by a larger area of low pressure that will move northwards into the uk and spread that rain and the stronger winds to more areas. so, we've got more rain at the moment across parts of england in particular. it stays wet for central and eastern areas. maybe just a bit drier through wales, the south west later on, but still windy here. and the winds will blow in more rain into eastern parts of scotland. western scotland, though, and northern ireland largely dry,
some clearer skies, but chilly here. maybe some early sunshine tomorrow. but generally its cloud and rain on the way as the rain sets in for more of england and wales. we've got gales still in the south west. it turns wetter across scotland. largely dry for northern ireland, and after the rain clears, we could get some sunshine in the afternoon for the south east of england, giving temperatures a boost. but underneath the cloud and rain, it's a chilly 11—13 degrees. and that rain is going to be heavy at times, especially over the hills. we do have amber rain warnings from the met office for later on saturday into saturday night. there could be more than two inches of rain actually over the higher ground here. and further north, as well, another area that's likely to have some flooding, the north east of scotland. a lot of rain especially over the hills blown in off the north sea around our area of low pressure. and as we move into the second half of the weekend, the centre of the low is going to be sitting slap bang over the uk. so, we've got the stronger winds probably around the edges where we have this rain.
that rain should move away from the north east of scotland in the morning. the wetter weather not far away from northern ireland, heading into south wales, the south west of england. not as windy for many central parts of the uk, but there will be some sunshine and some heavy showers around as well. and it's still a cool day, typically 13—14 degrees. those temperatures aren't really going to change as we look ahead into at least the early part of next week. the winds won't be quite as strong perhaps, but there will be sunshine and some heavy showers.
you're watching bbc news with me katty kay in washington, christian fraser is in london. our top stories... president trump's election campaign comes to a halt, as he tests positive for coronavirus. his doctor says he's fatigued but in good spirits. the democrats' presidential candidate joe biden, who shared a debate stage with donald trump this week, has tested negative. so too has the leader of the house, nancy pelosi. the democrats' campaign rolls on. we're expecting joe biden and kamala harris to hold live events shortly.