Trump says personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani tested positive for COVID-19
Former NYC mayor has been leading charge to overturn election results for Trump
U.S. President Donald Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, has tested positive for COVID-19, Trump said on Sunday, after a wave of travel by the former New York mayor seeking to persuade Republican state lawmakers to overturn the Nov. 3 election results.
The 76-year-old Giuliani is the latest in a long line of people close to the White House, including Trump himself, sickened in a pandemic that has killed more than 280,000 Americans.
Giuliani was exhibiting some symptoms and was admitted Sunday to Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington, D.C., a person familiar with the matter who was not authorized to speak publicly told The Associated Press.
Giuliani tweeted his thanks to "friends and followers" Sunday evening for their concern about him. "I'm getting great care and feeling good. Recovering quickly and keeping up with everything," he wrote on Twitter.
Giuliani has been spearheading Trump's foundering effort to overturn his election loss to Democratic president-elect Joe Biden through a flurry of lawsuits. Both Trump and Giuliani have repeatedly claimed, contrary to evidence, that the outcome was marred by widespread fraud.
State and federal officials have repeatedly said there is no evidence of fraud on any significant scale.
Giuliani visited Georgia on Thursday, where he has been urging state lawmakers to stop certification of Biden's win after making similar pleas in Michigan on Wednesday and Arizona on Monday.
Trump and many of his close associates have balked at public health officials' advice to wear masks and avoid crowds to stem transmission of the respiratory illness, which has roared to record levels in the United States as winter approaches.
The Trump campaign said in a statement that Giuliani tested negative twice before his visits to Arizona, Michigan and Georgia. Unidentified Trump team members who had close contact with Giuliani are in self-isolation.
"The mayor did not experience any symptoms or test positive for COVID-19 until more than 48 hours after his return," according to the statement. "No legislators in any state or members of the press are on the contact tracing list, under current CDC guidelines."
Georgia state senator critical of maskless appearance
Giuliani also appeared maskless at a Nov. 25 hearing in Pennsylvania, and he did not quarantine after being near an infected person at a Nov. 19 news conference at the Republican National Committee's headquarters. His son Andrew Giuliani, who is a White House aide, announced a day after the event that he had tested positive for the virus.
Research shows that people who contract the virus may become infectious to others several days before they start to feel ill.
WATCH | Rudy Giuliani tests positive for COVID-19:
Georgia state Sen. Jen Jordan, a Democrat who attended Thursday's hearing, expressed outrage after learning of Giuliani's diagnosis.
"Little did I know that most credible death threat that I encountered last week was Trump's own lawyer," Jordan tweeted. "Giuliani — maskless, in packed hearing room for 7 hours. To say I am livid would be too kind."
Giuliani, who developed an international profile as "America's Mayor" for his leadership after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, has faced mounting legal troubles during the Trump administration.
Federal prosecutors in Manhattan have been investigating Giuliani's business dealings in Ukraine, and two associates, Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, have been charged with campaign finance violations.
Giuliani has not been criminally charged and has denied wrongdoing. Parnas and Fruman have pleaded not guilty.
With files from The Associated Press