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Into the President's Health and the Public Trust

President Trump isn’t the first sitting president to become ill while in office. Here’s what history can teach us about what should happen when the President gets sick.

About this episode:

Over the past five days, President Donald Trump has been diagnosed with coronavirus, hospitalized at Walter Reed Military Medical Center, and discharged back to the White House.

White House doctors and officials gave conflicting report on the president’s health all weekend, and there is still uncertainty about the president’s condition and how infectious he may be.

Donald Trump is not the first president to become ill while in the Oval Office, so how can history help us understand what happens, and what’s supposed to happen, when the president gets sick?

NBC News Presidential Historian Michael Beschloss can recall a number of presidencies that were shaped by illness and the president’s relationship with the public trust. But this time, he tells Trymaine Lee, “We have never been in a period even remotely like this before."

Find the transcript here.

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