Mass meetings for the most convinced supporters have been a recurring phenomenon during Trump's political career. But since the beginning of March, when the corona pandemic seriously struck against the United States, this contact area with the nuclear troops has been closed.
Now is the time again when Trump begins his reelection campaign ahead of this fall's presidential election with a mass meeting in the southern city of Tulsa, Oklahoma.
“My campaign has not started yet. It starts on Saturday night in Oklahoma! ” writes the president on Twitter.
However, the mass meeting is surrounded by virus concerns. Anthony Fauci, who heads the country's federal infection control authority, comments on CBS's infection risk with the words: "It is very obvious that that risk exists".
At 1.30 pm local time, AP reported that six people working to prepare for tonight's mass meeting have tested positive for the corona virus.
The event is expected to fill the arena Bok Center, which means that at least 19,000 people will spend several hours indoors.Freedom from virus liability
On Friday, Oklahoma's Supreme Court rejected a lawsuit seeking to stop the campaign meeting with reference to the risk of infection. And Trump's staff are pointing out that visitors will be offered temperature controls, hands-on boobs and face masks.
"We are convinced that we can guarantee the safety of Tulsa," says White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany.
However, wearing face masks will be voluntary, and many of the gathered supporters are expected to follow Trump's example - the president has consistently chosen not to wear a mask. In addition, those who wish to attend the mass meeting must sign a document that frees the organizers from legal responsibility for the spread of infection.
However, the supporters do not seem deterred, despite the increase in infection rates in Oklahoma.
"This is a super-important moment for us all," says 19-year-old Stephen Corley, who camped outside the stadium since Tuesday to be sure of getting a seat.Pressed by criticism
The state is already voting overwhelmingly Republican and the mass conference is considered more about generating enthusiasm than reaching new voters. Trump has been pressured by criticism of the government's handling of the corona eruption and of the Black Lives Matter protests.
The mass meeting was originally scheduled for Friday, on the date "Juneteenth" when the release of the last US slaves was celebrated, but was moved after extensive criticism until Saturday. Trump followed up the remission with a warning to the counter-protesters expected for the meeting.
"Demonstrators, anarchists, rioters, looters or crap boots thinking of going to Oklahoma should be clear that you will not be treated like you have been in New York, Seattle or Minneapolis. It will be completely different! ” said the president in a statement.
Around 120,000 people have so far died of covid-19 in the United States.