New info deepens the mystery around Trump's unexpected and suspicious hospital visit

New info deepens the mystery around Trump's unexpected and suspicious hospital visit
President Donald J. Trump speaks with reporters on the South Lawn driveway of the White House Friday, Aug. 2, 2019, prior to boarding Marine One to begin his weekend trip to Bedminster, N.J. (Official White House Photo by Joyce N. Boghosian)

On Saturday, November 16, 2019, President Donald Trump made an unexpected visit to Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. That visit is among the many things that author Michael S. Schmidt discusses in the new book, “Donald Trump v. the United States: Inside the Struggle to Stop a President.”

New York Times reporter Gabriel Debenedetti, discussing Schmidt’s book, notes that it “reports the White House wanted Mike Pence ‘on standby to take over the powers of the presidency temporarily if Trump had to undergo a procedure that would have required him to be anesthetized.’ The vice president never had to take this step.”

The fact that Trump’s visit to Walter Reed in November 2019 was unannounced raised questions about the president’s health. But Dr. Sean Conley, Trump’s physician, described the visit as “routine” that month and wrote, in a memo, that it was only kept secret because of “scheduling uncertainties.” And Trump described the visit as a “very routine physical.”

“Despite some speculation, the president has not had any chest pain; nor was he evaluated or treated for any urgent or acute issues,” Conley said in the memo. “Specifically, he did not undergo any specialized cardiac or neurologic evaluations.”

But if this is true, it's not clear why, as Schmidt reported, Pence was prepared to take over the presidential duties. Other vice presidents have taken this step when the president has been temporarily incapacitated. For example, Dick Cheney stood in for George W. Bush when the then-president had to have a colonoscopy.

While it wouldn't be unprecedented for such an event to take place, it's perplexing why such arrangements were reportedly made for Trump and Pence in November when no clear explanation has been provided to the press.


Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal
{{ }}

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.