An evangelical pastor preached in Georgia. An attorney exercised at a gym in California. A political strategist went out on the stump in North Carolina. And a Cabinet secretary embarked on a three-state tour of manufacturing facilities.
Each had been in Washington days before, visiting the White House for a Sept. 26 ceremony introducing Trump’s Supreme Court nominee. The elegant affair, involving much of the country’s conservative elite, is now believed to have possibly contributed to a coronavirus outbreak sickening Trump and at least nine other members of his administration, in addition to top Republican officials and members of Congress and the military.
With no systematic effort to trace or advise the hundreds of guests at the Rose Garden ceremony and other events in the surrounding days, many made their way home and resumed their busy schedules, according to interviews with more than 40 people who attended events with the president between Sept. 25 and Oct. 1, when Trump announced he had tested positive.