Mark Meadows: diagnosed with COVID-19

U.S. President Donald Trump’s chief of staff Mark Meadows has been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to multiple reports.

Meadows, who frequently appears at public events without a mask, is the latest person within Trump’s circle to contract the virus.

The virus has killed more than 236,000 Americans and infected over 10 million.

Meadows’ news came as a third wave sweeps the United States.

Another top campaign aide, Nick Trainer, has also tested positive for the virus, Reuters reported.

Meadows, a former North Carolina lawmaker, regularly accompanied U.S. President Donald Trump on the final frenzied days of the campaign rallies leading up to the presidential election on Tuesday.

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He was also at a White House election night party attended by dozens of Trump loyalists.

Trump has regularly downplayed the severity of the virus, which has surged in recent weeks and is poised to continue do so into the winter.

He has contradicted the public statements of top health experts, even after an outbreak seized the White House in October.

The president was briefly hospitalised at the time after he was infected with the virus. His wife and son Barron also tested positive for the coronavirus in October.

His national security adviser, Robert O’Brien, was also sickened with the virus.

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Another friend of Trump’s, former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain, died of the coronavirus in July after attending one of Trump’s rallies.