Questions continued on Sunday around an unannounced hospital visit by Donald Trump on Saturday. CNN reported that the visit was not on Trump’s schedule, and did not follow “protocol” for visits to Walter Reed Navy Medical Center. A video posted online showed Trump walking briskly toward a black SUV as a United States Secret Service agent runs to get in position. That video may be seen below on this page.
The lack of any known notice to Walter Reed medical staff of Trump’s trip there indicated that it was “a non-routine visit and scheduled last minute,” CNN reported.
Also on Sunday, the White House placed an unexpected “lid” on the day’s activities at 9 a.m. EST, according to NBC News correspondent Kenny O’Donnell, reporting via Twitter, “which means no planned events or departures from the White House grounds for the president are expected,” she wrote.
White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham said that Trump spontaneously decided to visit the hospital for “portions” of his annual physical exam — which is not scheduled until early next year — because Saturday was “a down day,” CNN reported.
In a Fox News interview, Grisham described Trump as “healthy as can be. He has more energy than anybody in the White House.”
But after his physical in February of this year, results showed that Trump, 73, experiences a common form of heart disease, as well as elevated cholesterol levels. A coronary calcium CT scan showed Trump with a score of 133. CNN medical expert Sanjay Gupta said that any score over 100 indicates the presence of plaque in the arteries leading to the heart.
An unconfirmed rumor posted on Twitter by an opinion columnist for The Hill claimed that Trump went to the hospital to be treated for chest pains.
Trump critic Claude Taylor — who posted the above video — also speculated via Twitter that Trump had suffered chest pains. But rather than suffering a coronary incident, Taylor hypothesized that Trump simply had a “panic attack,” presumably in response to the current impeachment proceedings against him.
Gupta said that medical facilities located in the White House itself could handle most routine tests, but that “specialized” tests would require a hospital visit. CNN reported that it was unknown whether staff at Walter Reed were prepared for a Trump visit. Normally, presidential hospital trips require “a lot of time” for preparation, Gupta told CNN.
The network also reported that presidential visits to Walter Reed, which is located in Bethesda, Maryland, typically utilize the Marine One helicopter. But for reasons that remain unclear, Trump traveled to the facility via motorcade. The drive from the White House to Walter Reed typically takes about 30 minutes.
Shortly after the unusual hospital visit, conservative commentator Cheri Jacobus speculated that Trump was laying the groundwork for his own resignation from office, due to the impeachment proceedings against him.
The “health” excuse would allow the new president, Mike Pence, to grant Trump a full pardon for any crimes committed in office, on grounds of “compassion.”