Political News: Donald Trump To Rally Support
President Donald Trump plans to rally his supporters this coming Saturday, marking the first time the incumbent president hits the campaign trail since the coronavirus-mandated lockdown of the country put a halt on all electioneering activity.
Although there is concern amongst health officials with the coronavirus still posing a risk to public health, rallies are the lifeblood of the ‘America First’ president. The highly-charged MAGA rallies in 2016 were largely responsible for energizing his base and ultimately serving up the keys to the White House, to the chagrin of the punditocracy that got it spectacularly wrong then when they tipped a Hillary Clinton victory.
That was then. As Trump looks ahead to ramp up the support, he’s set to confront a different America, an exhausted, frustrated, and disappointed America demanding change. And not just rhetorical change but meaningful and quantifiable change. There’s also the small matter that Trump now finds himself all of a sudden on the shaky ground ahead of the 2020 US Elections, trailing behind presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, both in widespread opinion polls and in political betting markets.
The last few weeks have been a bit of a revelation for American society. The national outcry following the inhumane death of George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man who died while in police custody in Minneapolis – an abominable example of disgraceful police brutality captured on video for all eternity and broadcast the world over – has brought about the biggest protests in 50 years.
Experts point to the Black Lives Matter protests as the culmination of existing systemic racial discrimination and socio-economic inequalities that have been festering underneath the surface finally erupting to the fore in the aftermath of Floyd’s death. However, the on-going Covid-19 pandemic, current economic uncertainty, rising unemployment, and the unique impact of the deadly virus on BAEM (Black Asian and Ethnic Minority) communities played a catalysing role in tipping the scale.
American society was forced to look in the mirror and the national conscience did not like what it saw. From there the cacophonous cries for America to change took a life, prompting the political landscape to shift perceptibly in juxtaposition to a new-fangled vision for the ‘land of the free and home of the brave’ ahead of the 2020 US Elections. And Biden seemingly seizing on the current upheaval in American society has captured the public’s imagination with his promise to ‘heal the soul” of the country.
Current Odds for 2020 Elections courtesy of sportsbookreview.com
The first stop on the Trump rally tour: Tulsa, Oklahoma – a state that has seen a relatively low number of coronavirus cases since the new and unfamiliar virus arrived on America’s doorstep and wreaked widespread havoc.
“We’re going to be starting our rallies,” Trump said. “The first one… will be in Oklahoma, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The beautiful new venue, brand new and they’re looking forward to it. They’ve done a great job with Covid, as you know, in the state of Oklahoma.”
Trump also added that the rallies would continue in Florida, Texas, and Arizona, with more rallies sure to come as the month’s trickle down to the general elections on the 3rd of November.
Initially, the Tulsa rally was scheduled for Friday, 19th of June or June teeth as the day is known for its historical significance – a holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States. But Trump came under heavy criticism for his choice of date, place, and timing.
And yet: in an unprecedented move, Trump acquiesced by announcing late last week that he is rescheduling the rally ‘out of respect for this holiday’ to the next day.
In a tweet, Trump elaborated on this decision: “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.” Adding ““I have therefore decided to move our rally to Saturday, June 20th, in order to honour their requests.”
Trump rarely caves to pressure or public opinion. Instead, he typically doubles down against heavy criticism. Given the Black Lives Matter protests that are currently overwhelming streets in every major city – in the United States and around the globe – this departure is rather timely.
Separately, Tulsa also claims the ignominious stain of being the scene of the 1921 racially motivated massacre of African Americans – one of the worst massacres of black people in US history.