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Hope Hicks, the White House senior counselor and one of President Donald Trump’s most trusted staffers, decided to go back to work at the White House the day after she came down with COVID-19 symptoms and self-quarantined aboard Air Force One, according to the Washington Post.
In a new report from reporters Sarah Ellison and Josh Dawsey, 12 sources split among current and former administration officials along with other people close to Hicks detail her role amid the coronavirus cluster that consumed the White House last week.
Hicks tested negative early on Wednesday, the day after the first debate. However, she reportedly came down with symptoms during Trump’s rally in Minnesota later that day, and found a room on the flight home to quarantine “discreetly enough that other staffers did not know she was ill.”
She received her positive test result once she was back at work at the White House the next day.
Hicks kept the diagnosis close to the vest, according to the Post.
“Many colleagues, including one aide who had been near her during her potentially contagious period, were enraged when they only learned about it several hours later through the grapevine or White House contact tracers; two said they would have curtailed their contact with other people and taken a test immediately had they known sooner,” Ellison and Dawsey write.
Hicks has been staying at home alone following her diagnosis and is feeling “OK,” worrying about Trump and others in the White House, according to the Post.
The report also includes new details on Hicks, who has shied away from the spotlight ever since joining the Trump campaign in 2015 at the age of 26.
Hicks left the White House in 2018 after becoming the youngest White House communications director in American history, embroiled in the Russia investigation and faced with 155 questions she declined to answer from a congressional panel.
She took a role at Murdoch-owned Fox Corp. and moved to Los Angeles, where she took in $1.7 million in her 17 months there before returning to the White House earlier this year to help Trump with managing his reelection bid.
Her return just before the coronavirus pandemic struck the US has affected her morale in the workplace, according to sources close to Hicks who spoke with the Post.
“Hicks has sometimes mused to colleagues that her current tour in the White House isn’t as fun as the early days,” Ellison and Dawsey write, “when she bonded with a team of top advisers who have since moved on.”
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Source:: Business Insider