Key Pence aide diagnosed with coronavirus

At a ceremony to commemorate the end of WWII, and at a meeting with his Republican allies to discuss phase 4 coronavirus stimulus, President Donald Trump on Friday continued to go mask-less, at least in front of cameras...

TRUMP: "I'm not worried."

...and defended the measures taken by the White House to protect him and Vice President Mike Pence, after a second staffer tested positive for the coronavirus in the last two days.

TRUMP: "We've taken very strong precautions at the White House but, again, we're dealing with a... invisible situation."

REUTERS REPORTER JEFF MASON: "Mr. President, is there a reason why people just aren't wearing masks at the White House?"

TRUMP: "Well, they are."

MASON: "But they're not, sir."

TRUMP: "No, people that are serving me are."

MASON: "Well, we have not seen anyone wear a mask around you, sir, in the last two weeks."

Trump's chief of staff, Mark Meadows, jumped in to say the proper precautions were being taken.

MEADOWS: "I can tell you that the testing protocol is a strong regime and as it gets closer to the president, some of those that serve him will wearing a mask in those closer proximities."

The latest confirmed case of the virus inside the White House belonged to Katie Miller, the vice president's press secretary, and the wife of one of Trump's senior advisers, Stephen Miller.

TRUMP: "Katie, she tested very good for a long period of time and then all of a sudden today she tested positive. She hasn't come into contact with me. She spent some time with the vice president... The tests are perfect but something could happen between a test where it's good and then something happens and all of a sudden... she was tested very recently and tested negative and then today, I guess, for some reason, she tested positive. So Mike knows about it and Mike has done what he has to do. I think he is on an airplane going to some far away place."

That far away place was Des Moines, Iowa, where Pence met with faith leaders about holding "responsible" gatherings. The vice president did not wear a mask.

The diagnosis of Pence's spokesperson comes a day after news that Trump's personal valet had tested positive for the virus, raising alarm about its potential spread within the White House's inner most circle.

Video Transcript

- At a ceremony to commemorate the end of World War II and at a meeting with his Republican allies to discuss phase 4 coronavirus stimulus, President Donald Trump on Friday continued to go mask-less, at least in front of cameras--

DONALD TRUMP: I'm not worried, no. I'm not worried.

- --and defended the measures taken by the White House to protect him and Vice President Mike Pence after a second staffer tested positive for the coronavirus in the last two days.

DONALD TRUMP: We've taken very strong precautions at the White House, but, again we're dealing with a, uh, invisible situation.

JEFF MASON: And is there-- Mr. President, Is there a reason why people just aren't wearing masks at the White House?

DONALD TRUMP: Well, they are. Uh, people that--

JEFF MASON: But they're not, sir.

DONALD TRUMP: No, people that are serving me are.

JEFF MASON: Well, we have not seen anyone--

DONALD TRUMP: The people--

JEFF MASON: --wear a mask around you, sir, in the last two weeks.

- Trump's chief of staff, Mark Meadows, jumped in to say the proper precautions were being taken.

MARK MEADOWS: I can tell you that the testing protocol is a strong regime. And as it gets close to the president, some of those that serve him will wear a mask in those closer proximities.

- The latest confirmed case of the virus inside the White House belonged to Katie Miller, the vice president's press secretary and the wife of one of Trump's senior advisors Stephen Miller.

DONALD TRUMP: Katie-- she tested, uh, very good for a long period of time, and then all of a sudden today she tested positive. Uh, she hasn't come into contact with me, spent some time with the vice president--

The tests are perfect, but something could happen between a test where it's good. And then something happens, and all of a sudden-- she was tested very recently and tested negative. And then today, I guess, for some reason she tested positive.

So, Mike knows about it, and Mike has, uh, done what he has to do. I think he's on an airplane going to some faraway place.

- That faraway place was Des Moines, Iowa, where Pence met with faith leaders about holding quote "responsible gatherings." The vice president did not wear a mask.

The diagnosis of Pence's spokesperson comes a day after news that Trump's personal valet had tested positive for the virus, raising alarm about its potential spread within the White House's innermost circle.