Wed. Jan 27th, 2021

By DEB RIECHMANN, The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) – Disneyland has no crowds, yet has been shut down by coronoviruses. Fewer fans participated in the World Series this year than at any time in the last century. Big concerts have been canceled.

But in Trumpland it is a different story. Thousands of President Donald Trump supporters regularly cry together at campaign rallies around the country – alternating and masking social distance.

Trump rallies are one of the country’s biggest events in defiance of mob restrictions designed to stop the virus from spreading. This is at a time when public health experts are also advising people to think twice about inviting them for Thanksgiving dinner.

“It doesn’t matter who you are or where you are, when you have settings where people are crowded together and virtually no one wears a mask, an ideal setup for the acquisition and dissemination of broadcasts Is, “Dr. Anthony, the country’s top infectious disease specialist, recently told Yahoo News. “This is a public health and scientific fact.”

The Trump campaign, which distributes masks and hand sanitizers at its rallies, says those who attend are peaceful protesters who have the right to gather, just like Black Lives Matter protesters. The President says that he wants to bring the country back to normalcy.

Some states have fined venues that host rallies for violations of the cap on Trump’s crowd size. But the rallies continue – even the US sees matters as a spike, especially in the Midwest and the Plains. The nation posted a record high number of new infections last week – around 500,000.

And the crowd keeps getting out for Trump.

69-year-old Yesbell Benzam of West Bloomfield, Michigan, took about 90 minutes for Lansing and waited for more than four hours of rain in a rainy season to see Trump on Tuesday.

“I’m not scared at all,” said Benzam, wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat and a mask with “Trump 2020”. “We need to go back to normality.”

Conversely, Democrat Joe Biden has bypassed rallies and instead organizes online and drive-in events, where people honk their horns to show support. He calls Trump rallies “super-spreader events” and says he is listening to warnings from public health experts.

Since February 7, when Trump told author Bob Woodward that he knew that coronovirus was more aerial than the flu, the president has hosted more than 50 rallies in more than two dozen states. They were intercepted during March, April and May due to the epidemic. After resuming in late June, they were mainly excluded at airports.

The use of a mask is spotty. Some people cover their mouth but not their nose. And by the end of Trump’s hour-plus speeches, some masks are low around people’s chin. The campaign makes a point to ask people sitting behind Trump – and likely to capture on camera – to wear masks, but they don’t always comply.

Pete Kingsley, 80, of Straitburg, Pennsylvania, was not wearing a mask as he approached the security line Monday at Trump’s rally in Lititz. He said he believes the virus is being reared to hurt Trump’s chance of reelection and to “harm the economy.” “

“If I want to apply a mask, I will apply it,” he said. “If I don’t, I won’t put it on.”

65-year-old Lita Siaccio of Laurel, Maryland, was concerned about the contraction of the virus, but showed up anyway. She arrived wearing a mask and plastic shield and said that she planned to stand on the “edges” of the crowd.

Not all locals are happy with Trump’s arrival in the city.

Trump held a rally in Newport News, Virginia, on September 25, even as public health officials warned it would violate the Democratic government. Ralph Northam’s executive order generally banned the gathering of more than 250 people.

Zach Nayer is a resident of Newport News’s Riverside Regional Medical Center, and a colleague later compiled county data on new coronovirus cases at Trump rally sites at the Newport News event from late June. He reviewed the number of cases 14 days before and after each incident and published his findings on the health news site STAT.

They found that spikes in COVID-19 cases occurred in seven of the 14 cities and townships where rallies were held: Tulsa, Oklahoma; Phoenix; Old Forge, Pennsylvania; Bemidji and Mancato in Minnesota; And Oshok and Weston, Wisconsin.

However, the researchers acknowledged that increased caseloads could certainly not be associated with rallies.

“We’ve had a huge increase in cases over the last six to eight weeks,” said Judy Bursey, public information officer for the Health Department in Marathon County, the public information officer for the health department in Marathon County.

He said that the department is far behind in processing individual cases and has not been able to fully work out how far people have contracted the virus. He said that many people from the community are attending mass ceremonies, but the Health Department does not have data to suggest that one person is more guilty than the other.

“This is not about Trump. It’s not about Biden or anyone else running for office right now, “Burrow said. The problem is that people are going to places where there are a lot of other people. They’re not masking. Those social distinctions Not doing.… Not doing things that can slow the spread. “

Trump’s rallies have upset Democrats on the battlefield, including Christopher Gibbs, a farmer from Maplewood, Ohio, who voted for Trump in 2016 but now supports Biden.

Gibbs is the chairman of a new group called Rural America 2020. Which sponsored dozens of billboards across the country to raise critical issues to rural residents. After returning to the presidential campaign trail, the group decided to use the hoardings to remodel and warn residents about the risks of its events.

The group also placed an aircraft tow a tall banner over Omaha, Nebraska before Tuesday’s rally. It said: “Warning! Superspreader Trump Visiting NE. Masks Up! “

In Minnesota, Democratic Gov. Tim Timmz said he was “deeply disappointed” to learn that Vice President Mike Pence’s rally in the city of Hibbing was poor on Monday in compliance with the state’s masking and guiding social foresight.

The Trump campaign paid $ 1,000 to get to the rally venue, according to a contract with the airport that included a provision that the rally conformed to Minnesota sanctions. The Hibbing police estimated the 650 – well beyond the state’s 250-man limit due to COVID-19.

The Minnesota Department of Health says that 24 coronovirus cases have occurred among those attending large Trump campaign events in the state, including 16 at a rally in Bemidji. The department said four more cases were reported among anti-Trump protesters who attended the Bemidji rally.

Coronovirus in Levant, Maine, concerned about the proliferation of Truevary Family Orchids, regretted Trump’s visit to his business on Sunday this week.

Bagh said that this led the president to expect an unannounced visit, surprising some and taking pictures with the pumpkin. Instead, word got out and hundreds of people – many without masks – appeared and took the motorcycle to the arena, which has a mask and social distance policy.

“We were not aware that the trip would be open to the public without the ability to implement our policies,” said Orchard. The employee was not able to move freely. “

Associated Press writers Tom Tait in Las Vegas, Steve Kernoski in Minneapolis, and Amer Madhani and Jill Colvin in Washington contributed to this report.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This content may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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