Trump Rally Concerns Tulsa Health Director: “Not During A Pandemic”

Donald Trump is planning to resume his massive campaign rallies, despite the ongoing pandemic, but not everyone is happy about it. His first return date is in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He’s already moved the event by a day, after criticism for scheduling in that city on Juneteenth, but now the city’s health department director says he wishes Trump would wait.

Donald Trump covid rally concerns health dept
US President Donald Trump gives a thumbs up during a “Keep America Great” campaign rally at Wildwoods Convention Center in Wildwood, New Jersey, January 28, 2020. (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)

In an interview with Tulsa World, Dr. Bruce Dart, the director of Tulsa’s health department, said that he’s honored the president wants to come and hold an event in his city, but he’d rather the timing be different. He said that a large indoor event could pose risks to attendees, and to the president himself.

I think it’s an honor for Tulsa to have a sitting president want to come and visit our community, but not during a pandemic. I’m concerned about our ability to protect anyone who attends a large, indoor event, and I’m also concerned about our ability to ensure the president stays safe as well.

The event has already faced extensive criticism for several reasons. First, it was scheduled for Juneteenth — the June 19th anniversary of the day in 1865 that officially saw the end of slavery in the U.S., and also the anniversary of the day in 1921 when white mobs carried out a massacre of black Tulsa residents, and destroyed homes and businesses. Reuters reported Friday that Trump would be moving the visit back a day to avoid Juneteenth.

With regard to the pandemic, Health Department Director Dr. Dart isn’t the first to express concerns. According to NBC ticket holders receive a disclaimer saying that those purchasing seats agree not to hold the president responsible if they become ill.

Tulsa County’s health department has posted statistics showing a significant upward trend in new cases. Trump campaign manager Brad Parsclae says that there have been requests for over one million tickets so far, and that attendees will be subject to temperature checks and offered hand sanitizer and masks.

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