Nine people who attended Trump rally in Minnesota contracted coronavirus

Nine people who attended a campaign rally for President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump DOJ demanded metadata on 73 phone numbers and 36 email addresses, Apple says Putin says he's optimistic about working with Biden ahead of planned meeting Biden meets Queen Elizabeth for first time as president MORE in Bemidji, Minn., last month have tested positive for the coronavirus.

Doug Schultz, a Minnesota Department of Health spokesman, confirmed to The Hill that of the nine who contracted COVID-19, two have been hospitalized, one of whom required intensive care.

It is not immediately clear that the people contracted the virus at the rally. 


The news is just the latest in a string of negative developments for the White House; as Trump himself was treated over the weekend after his own coronavirus diagnosis, a burgeoning number of White House staffers, campaign aides and outside advisers also tested positive. 

Many of the individuals who have tested positive attended a Sept. 26 event at the White House where Trump announced the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. The event was held outside, but many people in the crowded audience did not wear masks. 

"Well, I think the data speak for themselves. We had a superspreader event in the White House, and it was in a situation where people were crowded together and were not wearing masks," Anthony FauciAnthony FauciOvernight Health Care: FDA says millions of J&J doses from troubled plant must be thrown out | WHO warns Africa falling far behind in vaccinations | Top CDC official says US not ready for next pandemic Top CDC official warns US not ready for next pandemic WHO official: Delta variant 'poised to take hold' in Europe MORE, the government's top infectious diseases expert, said Friday

Democrats tore into the Trump campaign over the Minnesota news, directly blaming the president for the infections.

“From the start of this pandemic, Donald Trump and Minnesota Republicans have ignored public health experts and put their re-elections ahead of the health of Minnesotans. It was only a matter of time until the dangerous, maskless campaign events staged by Donald Trump and Minnesota Republicans landed Minnesotans in the hospital,” Ken Martin, chairman of Minnesota's Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party, said in a statement.

The news is unlikely to deter the campaign from continuing its events, with Trump set to hold a rally at the White House on Saturday and in Florida on Monday. 

“Tying these cases to an outdoor event that occurred three weeks ago, where hand sanitizer and face masks were supplied, is a stretch,” campaign spokesperson Tim Murtaugh told The Hill. “We wish them all speedy recoveries.”