Trump campaign adviser Corey Lewandowski has tested positive for the coronavirus, a source familiar with the diagnosis told NBC News on Thursday, raising concerns that President Donald Trump’s crowded election night party at the White House sparked another outbreak of the deadly virus.
Lewandowski, who was one of the president’s campaign managers in 2016, is one of several top Trump allies and officials who have contracted the virus after attending the largely mask-less event in the East Room of the White House.
Despite the diagnosis, Lewandowski told CNBC in a text message, “I feel great.”
Lewandowski has been helping the Trump campaign’s election challenges since the election, and spent several days on the ground in Philadelphia advocating Trump’s case — often without a mask — alongside Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani and former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi.
David Bossie, who had been tasked with heading Trump’s re-election legal challenges, tested positive for Covid-19 on Sunday, sidelining him from those efforts, NBC News reported earlier this week. Bossie, who also attended the White House election night event, traveled to Phoenix last week as part of the president’s legal challenge there, and did not wear a mask while holding a news conference alongside Republican politicians and other campaign staffers.
Reporters at the White House party, which lasted several hours, said that of the nearly 150 people still at the event when Trump emerged to make remarks after midnight, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar was the only high-profile attendee seen wearing a mask.
In the week since the event, White House chief of staff Mark Meadows has tested positive for the virus, as has Housing Secretary Ben Carson.
On Wednesday, another attendee, former Trump campaign adviser Healy Baumgardner, told NBC News that she tested positive for coronavirus, as has Brian Jack, the White House political director, two sources familiar with the diagnosis confirmed.
The outbreak is the third to hit the White House in recent months.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, has called President Donald Trump’s Sept. 26 Rose Garden ceremony announcing his nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court a “superspreader event.”
Among the people who attended the event who later tested positive are the president and first lady Melania Trump, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former top Trump aide Kellyanne Conway, Republican Sens. Thom Tillis of North Carolina and Mike Lee of Utah, and University of Notre Dame President John Jenkins.
Since then, the number of people in Trump’s orbit who have tested positive for the coronavirus has grown to include more than a dozen aides at the White House and on the Trump campaign, as well as others in their orbit.
A second, smaller outbreak hit the vice president’s office last month, with at least five Mike Pence aides, including chief of staff Marc Short, having tested positive for the virus.
In all, an NBC News review found there have been at least 44 positive coronavirus cases involving White House officials, campaign officials and Trump allies in the past two months, not counting several related cases or those that are less recent.