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Former U.S. President Barack Obama announced on Sunday afternoon that he has tested positive for COVID-19.
“I just tested positive for COVID. I’ve had a scratchy throat for a couple days, but am feeling fine otherwise,” Obama tweeted. “Michelle and I are grateful to be vaccinated and boosted, and she has tested negative. It’s a reminder to get vaccinated if you haven’t already, even as cases go down.”
Obama recently returned to the Washington D.C. area after spending most of his winter in Hawaii. A source close to Obama told CNN that he tested positive in D.C.
Obama has advocated for getting the COVID-19 vaccines in the past. In March of last year, he joined with fellow former Presidents George W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter, and their spouses, in a commercial promoting the vaccines.
“This vaccine means hope,” Obama said in his portion of the commercial. “It will protect you and those you love from this dangerous and deadly disease.”
Obama shared the commercial in a Facebook post, adding, “Michelle and I got vaccinated against COVID-19 because we know it’s the best way to beat this pandemic, protect one another, and get the country back up and running again. So I hope you’ll get the vaccine as soon as it’s available to you. It could save your life.”
Former President Donald Trump did not participate in the March 2021 vaccine commercial. Instead, Trump released a statement taking credit for the availability of the coronavirus vaccines, saying that if he hadn’t been president “you wouldn’t be getting that beautiful ‘shot’ for 5 years, at best, and probably wouldn’t be getting it at all.”
“I hope everyone remembers,” Trump said.
During the last few months of his presidential term, Trump sped up the process for developing and approving COVID-19 vaccines, through an effort known as “Operation Warp Speed.”
Trump also tested positive for COVID-19 in October of 2020.