Missionaries who fall ill from deadly diseases, such as the American doctor who contracted the Ebola virus in West Africa, should not return to the United States and should have to "suffer the consequences," Donald Trump told "Fox & Friends" on Monday.
Dr. Kent Brantly, who had been treating Ebola patients in Liberia, West Africa, flew to Atlanta on Saturday for treatment at Emory University Hospital after he contracted the disease. While missionaries who served in other countries were "great people," Trump said the United States had enough problems without having the threat of the spread of Ebola.
"They're tremendous people. But they have to suffer the consequences. They go and they try and help other people, but things like this happen," the real estate and entertainment mogul said. "Our country's in trouble. We cannot afford to have another epidemic in this country."
Trump created a firestorm when he shared the sentiment on Twitter. While admitting on Monday that "on a humanitarian basis" he didn't like taking the position, he said some people were "strongly in favor" of his tweets, while others opposed them.
On Aug. 1, Trump tweeted: "The U.S. cannot allow EBOLA infected people back. People that go to far away places to help out are great-but must suffer the consequences!"
On Aug. 2, he tweeted:
The same day, he tweeted:
To deal with the situation, Trump suggested the United States should send doctors "to West Africa to take care of our people." He said a further threat came from people fleeing Africa for the United States to avoid the disease.
"We should end flights coming in from West Africa and Liberia. We should certainly do that," he said. "How many of those people have Ebola? And it's going to be a problem."
Trump called the employees of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention "great people," but described the problem the agency had when it was revealed in July that lab workers might have been exposed to samples of the infectious disease anthrax.
"I watched the head of the CDC talking about Ebola [saying], 'We can control it. We think we can control it.' They couldn't control their own labs a month ago. So what would they know?" Trump said.
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