Any remaining doubt that curbing President Trump’s campaign rallies was a key goal of the Democratic response to COVID-19 should be quelled by the Democrats’ antic opposition to Saturday’s Trump rally in Tulsa. They began with shrill fear-mongering, despite data showing that daily case rates have plateaued nationally and death rates are declining. They followed up with absurd claims that the rally’s original date was a racist “dog whistle.” As Rep. Val Demings (D-Fla.) put it, “Tulsa was the site of the worst racist violence in American history. The president’s speech there on Juneteenth [June 19] is a message to every Black American: more of the same.”
Congressman Pocan, who represents Wisconsin’s Second District, issued a statement suggesting that President Trump’s negligence is responsible for the coronavirus pandemic and that he wants to endanger his own supporters.
Never mind that Juneteenth commemorates the end of slavery, which the Republican Party abolished in the United States after overcoming the violent resistance of the Democratic planter class in the Civil War. The point is to find some pretext to stop President Trump from communicating directly to the American people while his campaign team uses the rallies to register voters and continue to grow Trump’s support using its advantage in digital technology. Key to the latter is an online app that rally attendees can download by providing a phone number. It’s an advanced data mining tool that places the Trump team light years ahead of the Biden campaign on voter outreach. As CNN reports,
The user-friendly Trump app is self-contained, and features tutorial videos from top campaign aides and surrogates like Lara Trump, who explains how to become a “digital activist” on social media and host a “MAGA meet up.” Kimberly Guilfoyle explains how to become a fundraising “bundler” and political director Chris Carr discusses how to be a grassroots team leader.… Some Democrats publicly express concern that the Biden’s campaign’s digital presence is lagging in normal times, even more so in the age of coronavirus with everything happening online.
They know the Trump campaign’s competitive edge in digital technology gave it a significant advantage over the Biden operation while the pandemic interrupted the campaign. Moreover, they justifiably worry that this edge will become even more deadly if they are unable to prevent the president from launching a new series of rallies. This combination of rallies and technology has the Democrats so nervous they found a Tulsa lawyer and a couple of local community groups to sue the operators of the BOK Center, where the rally is scheduled to take place. The judge denied their request for a court order to stop the rally.
Meanwhile, Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wis.) has introduced the “Refusal to Accept Losses or Liability In Every Situation (RALLIES) Act.” Pocan is the co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and claims his bill will “ban enforcement of liability waivers for indoor gatherings of 1,000 or more people in localities where the number of COVID-19 cases has been increasing in the preceding 14 days.” The congressman, who represents Wisconsin’s Second District, issued a statement suggesting that President Trump’s negligence is responsible for the coronavirus pandemic and that he wants to endanger his own supporters:
Since the beginning of this pandemic, the President has refused to take ownership over his administration’s disastrous response to COVID-19. As we see cases continue to rise … this President wants the right to endanger thousands of people at an indoor stadium with impunity. We refuse to let a candidate for re-election threaten the lives of the people of this country for political gain. With over 2 million COVID cases in the United States and over 116,000 deaths, I would hope this president’s actions would prioritize recovery, not a resurgence in cases nationwide.
Predictably, the legacy media mimic the Democratic denunciation of Trump’s plan to hold the Tulsa rally. In the New York Times, Thomas L. Friedman asks, “Is Trump Trying to Spread Covid-19?” The editors of Tulsa World opine, “This is the wrong time and Tulsa is the wrong place for the Trump rally.” The Washington Post’s Michele L. Norris writes that the decision to hold a Trump rally in Tulsa is “an act of diabolical irony.” The St. Louis Post Dispatch insists, “Trump’s Tulsa rally is a dangerous exercise in egotism that could cost lives.” CNN puts it thus: “The remarkable idiocy of holding a Trump rally in Tulsa.”
Why does all this sound and fury seem familiar? This nonsense is little more than a verbatim recitation of the abuse they heaped on Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) when he decided to open his state for business in May. Remember when Florida was going to be the “next New York”? This nonsense, like the rest of the absurdly portentous predictions made about Florida, were comically inaccurate. Perhaps this is why none of Trump’s supporters are paying any attention to these characters. Being lied to by the Democrats and the media is not a new experience for them. NBC reports that they are already arriving in droves:
Supporters of President Donald Trump amassed outside the arena in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on Thursday, two days before he is scheduled to hold a campaign rally expected to draw at least 100,000 people.… Despite an uptick of coronavirus cases in the area and fears the event could be a COVID-19 “super-spreader,” many attendees chose to forgo masks and social distancing while in line, where people waited on lawn chairs and with tents. One group even entertained their fellow Trump supporters with an upbeat song about his re-election.
This, rather than a second wave of COVID-19, is what the Democrats truly fear — 100,000 unapologetic Trump supporters showing up for a single campaign event after years of relentless “Orange Man Bad” propaganda. Trump’s probable 2020 opponent had difficulty raising competitive crowds during the pre-coronavirus primaries. Even worse, he recently endured an embarrassingly flaccid response to his address to the Wisconsin Democratic Convention. In presidential politics, size matters, and no one believes Biden measures up to President Trump. This is why the Democrats are terrified of the Tulsa rally and will go to any lengths possible, legal or otherwise, to disrupt the event.