The cancellation of large-scale events in the US is presenting challenges for Democratic campaigns as well as President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign.
The Trump campaign depends on the trove of data produced by his “Keep America Great” arena rallies to target and engage potential voters, and without regular rallies in key states, they are being forced to improvise. Trump’s team is now touting its unique preparedness through “unprecedented virtual and digital campaign tools.” We’re better positioned to virtually engage voters than any other campaign,” campaign manager Brad Parscale said in a statement.
According to a campaign press release, those tools are expected to include: “holding virtual events with top surrogates, utilizing online platforms to train thousands of members of the Trump Neighborhood Team, activating the massive volunteer network to make calls to rally support for the President in states voting soon, and increasing online voter registration efforts of Trump rally attendees identified as not currently registered to vote.”
The events currently scheduled on the campaign’s website are “in the process of being turned into virtual seminars and a Trump Victory Organizer will contact attendees with more details,” the website says.
Trump has a key advantage over his Democratic opponent during the public health crisis: incumbent status.
“Americans want to see their President, their elected officials, their government acting in ways that protect the safety of the citizens and the national security of this country,” campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh told CNN.
The Trump campaign is currently requiring all staffers at its Northern Virginia headquarters to work from home through Monday while the office undergoes a deep clean. It’s unclear if the office will reopen on Tuesday.
Trump initially pushed his campaign not to cancel any events in light of the coronavirus outbreak, and aides fear a restless President if he’s unable to hold rallies, something he’s done continuously throughout his time in office.
The risk of holding campaign events came to light this week after a donor who attended a Trump Victory event, which raises money for the campaign and Republican National Commitee, tested positive for coronavirus.
Source: CNN News