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Senate cancels work as lawmakers contract virus

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on coronavirus infections hitting President Donald Trump and others in his circle (all times EDT):

12:30 p.m.

Senate Republicans have canceled legislative work until Oct. 19 as the coronavirus sweeps through their ranks and lawmakers increasingly call for comprehensive testing on Capitol Hill.

But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement Saturday that confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett are still on.

One by one, President Donald Trump and a series of GOP lawmakers have fallen ill with the virus that has killed more than 208,000 Americans.


Over the last week, many of the politicians who tested positive attended events at which few people wore masks and mingled in the halls and tunnels of the Capitol complex.

Just since Friday morning, Trump, Sen. Thom Tillis of North Carolina, Mike Lee of Utah and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin announced that they have tested positive.

The Senate was to reconvene this week ahead of its confirmation proceedings for Barrett. McConnell has said those hearings, scheduled to begin Oct. 12, are “full steam ahead.”

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12:15 p.m.

A person familiar with President Donald Trump’s COVID-19 illness says some of his vital signs over the past 24 hours were “very concerning” but they’ve improved since he was admitted to a military hospital.

The person has knowledge of the president’s medical condition but was not authorized to speak publicly and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

It contradicted Trump’s doctors, who said during a press conference Saturday that the president was doing very well and felt as though he could walk out of a military hospital. They said he had not been on oxygen Saturday or when he was with their medical team Friday, and that his symptoms were subsiding.

Trump was admitted to Walter Reed Medical Center on Friday after saying he had contracted COVID-19. First lady Melania Trump also has fallen ill.

The person described the next 48 hours as critical and said there was no clear path yet on a recovery and that it could be days before he was discharged.

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12 p.m.

President Donald Trump’s doctors say the president is doing well, is fever-free and isn’t having difficulty breathing after contracting the coronavirus.

Doctors said Saturday that Trump was not on supplemental oxygen, and while he had fatigue, nasal congestion and coughing, his symptoms are now resolving and improving.

Dr. Sean Conley, Trump’s physician, refused to say whether Trump had been on supplemental oxygen at any point during his illness, saying he was not on it Saturday or Thursday or Friday while he was with the medical team from Walter Reed Medical Center.

Trump was transferred to the military hospital on Friday afternoon in what doctors say was a precaution after he and first lady Melania Trump tested positive for COVID-19. He has not transferred powers.

Conley says the president has “a lot of work to do” and is doing it.

Doctors say the president told them: