Coronavirus: Trump plans campaign event despite White House telling public to avoid crowds

Graig Graziosi
Getty Images
Getty Images

Despite his own administration advising people to avoid events with large crowds to help stop the spread of coronavirus, President Donald Trump has announced he’ll hold a campaign event in Wisconsin.

Mr Trump will attend a “Catholics for Trump” event in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on 19 March. The event is apparently not a typical campaign rally, so the number of expected attendees is not yet known. Just an hour before, the White House held a briefing from the coronavirus task force which included a recommendation that people “avoid crowding.”

Mr Trump announced these rallies just hours after Senator Bernie Sanders and vice president Joe Biden cancelled duelling campaign rallies in Cleveland, Ohio. Three cases of coronavirus were confirmed in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, and Governor Mike DeWine declares a state of emergency on Monday.

Vice President Mike Pence said Mr Trump would schedule rallies on a “day-to-day” basis.

Mr Trump, who has been in contact with lawmakers that have self-quarantined due to coronavirus exposure, said he’d be open to getting tested for the virus.

“I don’t think it’s a big deal. I would do it,” Mr Trump said.

However, Mr Trump also maintains he doesn’t need to, because the White House doctor allegedly said he was in good health.

“But, again, I spoke to the White House doctor - terrific guy, talented guy. He said he sees no reason to do it. There’s no symptoms, no anything. And you know what? If there were, you people would be the first to know it,” Mr Trump said. “You would maybe even tell me about it.”

The congressmen who have self-quarantined are Representatives Doug Collins, Matt Gaetz and Mark Meadows.

Mr Gaetz and Mr Meadows’ have tested negative for the virus. Mr Gaetz initially mocked the severity of the virus by wearing a gas mask to the House floor during a vote.

Mr Collins and Mr Gaetz were exposed to the virus at the Conservative Political Action Conference last month in National Harbor, Maryland.