According to his campaign, more than a million ticket requests have been made for Trump’s first rally since March, when the CCP virus pandemic put a halt to all in-person campaign events.
People who attend the rally, however, won’t be required to wear the masks or maintain social distancing, CNN reported.
Before entering each guest will get:
There will be precautions for the heat and bottled water as well.
— Brad Parscale (@parscale) June 15, 2020
A full house is expected at the rally at Tulsa’s BOK Center, which has a capacity of just under 20,000. Brad Parscale, Trump’s campaign manager, said that the Tulsa rally has drawn the most interest of any Trump event.
When ticket requests hit 800,000 over the weekend, it represented the “biggest data haul and rally signup of all time” by 10 times, Parscale said.
People can still sign up for the rally on the campaign’s website. While anyone can get free tickets, they’re honored on a first-come, first-serve basis.
The rally, which is expected to begin at about 7 p.m. local time, was pushed back one day so it wouldn’t fall on Juneteenth, a holiday that commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. June 19 is celebrated as the day when, in 1865, Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger of the Union Army arrived in Galveston, Texas, and informed the slaves in the state that they had been freed by the Emancipation Proclamation made more than two years previously.
A number of officials, including Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.), called on or personally spoke to Trump about changing the date of the event, and the president ended up supporting the new date.
Trump said in a statement June 12 that “unfortunately” the rally was originally scheduled to fall on Juneteenth, adding, “Many of my African American friends and supporters have reached out to suggest that we consider changing the date out of respect for this Holiday, and in observance of this important occasion and all that it represents.”
The date change was made to honor those requests, he said.
The precautions were added after Tulsa City-County Health Department Director Dr. Bruce Dart told the Tulsa World that he hoped the event could be pushed back further because of a “significant increase in our case trends.”
“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,” he said over the weekend.
“COVID is here in Tulsa, it is transmitting very efficiently,” Dart added. “I wish we could postpone this to a time when the virus isn’t as large a concern as it is today.”
Prospective attendees are being told that they can’t sue the Trump campaign or the venue if they contract the CCP virus, which emerged in China last year and causes the disease COVID-19.
“By clicking register below, you are acknowledging that an inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public place where people are present,” says a statement to people who sign up.
“By attending the rally, you and any guests voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19 and agree not to hold Donald J. Trump for President, Inc.; BOK Center; ASM Global; or any of their affiliates, directors, officers, employees, agents, contractors, or volunteers liable for any illness or injury.”
“The campaign takes the health and safety of rally-goers seriously and is taking precautions to make the rally safe,” Erin Perrine, deputy communications director for the campaign, said in an email. “Every single rally-goer will have their temperature checked, be provided a face mask and hand sanitizer. We are also taking precautions to keep rally-goers safe in the Oklahoma heat—including providing water bottles to keep people hydrated.”
Ronna McDaniel, chairwoman of the Republican National Committee, told Fox News that people with underlying conditions can choose not to attend events such as the rally.
Oklahoma reported 8,417 cases of COVID-19 and 359 deaths as of June 15.
Zachary Stieber and Reuters contributed to this report.