Herman Cain, a former Republican presidential candidate, announced on Twitter on Thursday that he had been hospitalized with the coronavirus.

Cain, the former chief executive of Godfather’s Pizza, learned Monday that he had tested positive, was hospitalized Wednesday and Thursday “was resting comfortably in an Atlanta-area hospital,” according to a statement posted on his Twitter account.

Cain, 74, attended Trump’s indoor rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on June 20. A few hours before the event, the Trump campaign disclosed that six staff members who had been working on the rally had tested positive for the virus during a routine screening. Two members of the Secret Service also tested positive there, people familiar with the matter said.

In a video on his website, Cain described the rally, and he said he had worn a mask while in groups of people. But he also posted photographs of himself on social media that showed him without a mask and surrounded by people in the arena.

“People were concerned, because of the media, about whether or not this was going to turn into another uptick in number of cases of COVID-19,” Cain said in the video.

Cain said that all rally participants, including him, had had their temperatures checked and that some people had worn masks. Sanitizer stations were scattered throughout the arena.


“Whether or not it’s going to work or not, we don’t know, but the chances are even though it was a crowded room of people, if they took precautions, probably not going to be a big uptick,” he said. The statement on Cain’s Twitter account said that there was “no way of knowing for sure how or where Mr. Cain contracted the coronavirus.”

In a post on Cain’s website, its editor, Dan Calabrese, echoed that statement.

“I realize people will speculate about the Tulsa rally, but Herman did a lot of traveling the past week,” he wrote. “I don’t think there’s any way to trace this to the one specific contact that caused him to be infected. We’ll never know.”

Tim Murtaugh, director of communications for Trump’s reelection campaign, said in a statement: “Contact tracing was conducted after the Tulsa rally but we do not comment regarding the medical information of individuals. Regardless, Mr. Cain did not meet with the president.”

Cain ran as a Republican candidate in the 2012 presidential election. His platform included the 9-9-9 tax plan: a flat 9% individual income tax rate, a 9% corporate tax rate and a 9% national sales tax.

Last year, Cain withdrew his name as one of Trump’s picks for the Federal Reserve Board, following the reemergence of old accusations of sexual harassment.