Robert Trump, the younger brother of the president, died Saturday at the age of 71. His death came just about 24 hours after it was announced Friday that he had been hospitalized in New York City. But details about Trump’s cause of death did not include how he died — an omission that was seen as glaring to many and quickly gave way to speculation across social media as the nation grapples with the lingering coronavirus pandemic.
The New York Times reported that a family friend said Robert Trump had been taking blood thinners “after a recent fall” caused him to have “brain bleeds,” a term that Harvard Medical School describes as being associated with a “hemorrhagic stroke.” But like all the other news outlets covering his death, there was no official cause of death reported.
Robert Trump was hospitalized Friday under similarly uncertain circumstances, which is when the coronavirus and COVID-19 speculation began without proof. But his death the very next day swiftly renewed that speculation.
Considering how the president has repeatedly downplayed the pandemic’s effects on America and is rarely seen in public wearing a mask, Twitter users especially suggested that Robert Trump must have died from coronavirus complications.
Again, there is no proof of how Robert Trump died or his cause of death. But because the president has a reputation for rampant dishonesty, a lack of full disclosure when announcing his younger brother’s death was met with suspicion.
With that said, it was reported that the president visited his brother in the hospital Friday. While special accommodations are routinely made for presidents, healthcare protocol dictates that patients being treated for the coronavirus cannot have any visitors. That fact still didn’t prevent COVID speculation, though, as details about Friday’s visit were scarce.
Social media users were not kind to Donald Trump as he grieved the death of his younger brother. America woke up Sunday morning to not just the news that Robert Trump had died, but also to the viral hashtag “#wrongtrump” being among the nation’s top trending topics on Twitter. It was a morbid thought amid the actual loss of life that underscored the increasingly prevailing sentiment surrounding a president who has seemed more concerned with securing his own re-election than he has with the citizens he’s supposed to be presiding over.
Multiple people close to the president have tested positive for the coronavirus. Herman Cain, a Trump campaign surrogate, died last week following a coronavirus diagnosis that came after he attended a rally for the president during which very few people were wearing masks, including him.
As of Sunday morning, there have been more than 5.5 million coronavirus cases in the United States of America, according to the most recent statistics. More than 172,000 of those cases ended in deaths. Nearly 3 million have recovered.