Trump to Woodward in April: I'm 'just not' worried about contracting COVID-19

Trump to Woodward in April: I'm 'just not' worried about contracting COVID-19
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President TrumpDonald TrumpNYT: Rep. Perry played role in alleged Trump plan to oust acting AG Arizona GOP censures top state Republicans McCain, Flake and Ducey Biden and UK prime minister discuss NATO, multilateralism during call MORE told veteran journalist Bob Woodward earlier this year that he was not worried about contracting COVID-19. 

In an April 13 interview, the Washington Post reporter told the president that “You’re risking getting it, of course,” asking him "The way you move around and have those briefings and deal with people. Are you worried about that?" 

"No, I'm not. I don't know why I'm not. I'm not," the president responded, according to an audio recording of the interview published by CNN.


When Woodward asked the president “Why?” he responded “I don’t know. I’m just not.”

Trump announced early Friday that he and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpScorned and mistreated, Melania Trump deserved much better from the media The Hill's Morning Report - Biden takes office, calls for end to 'uncivil war' K Street navigates virtual inauguration week MORE tested positive for COVID-19. Trump was taken to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Friday, where he is set to remain “for the next few days.” 

During the April 13 interview, Trump called COVID-19 “the plague” and said that the virus “rips you apart.” Trump also said during the interview that “it’s so easily transmissible, you wouldn’t even believe it.” 

CNN also published audio of Trump in an April 5 interview explaining that older people and those with “a condition” would be in “big trouble” if they test positive for COVID-19.” 

"It moves rapidly, Bob. It moves rapidly and viciously. If you're the wrong person and if it gets you, your life is pretty much over if you're in the wrong group," Trump said.

"Well, that's our age group, isn't it, sir?" Woodward asked, according to CNN reported.


"It's ... well, hopefully we're much younger than that, Bob. You look younger. But, but it's our age group. You know? Older, especially 80. Well, you're not anywhere near that," Trump responded.

Woodward is 77 and Trump is 74. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has warned that older adults, especially those older than 85, as well as people with conditions such as cancer, obesity, immunocompromised conditions and more, are more likely to have serious ramifications should they contract the virus. 

The recordings are part of wide-ranging interviews for Woodward’s book "Rage" that was released earlier this month.

Trump acknowledged the danger of COVID-19 in recorded interviews from February, even as he publicly downplayed the threat of the virus. Trump told Woodward in March that he “always wanted to play it down” to avoid creating a panic in the US.