Surprise, Trump's Tulsa Rally Probably Caused a Spike in New Coronavirus Cases in the County

Illustration for article titled Surprise, Trumps Tulsa Rally Probably Caused a Spike in New Coronavirus Cases in the County
Image: Getty

Despite drawing thousands fewer attendees than Donald Trump’s implacable ego would have liked, the president’s rally in Tulsa last month likely played a role in a huge surge in the county’s coronavirus cases. Who could possibly have predicted this? Ah yes, that’s right: Literally everyone.

Advertisement

Tulsa City-County Health Department Director Dr. Bruce Dart said Wednesday that the rally and large protests “likely contributed” to the spike in new confirmed cases, which reached 261 on Monday, compared to the 76 cases reported the week before the June 20 rally.

“In the past few days, we’ve seen almost 500 new cases, and we had several large events just over two weeks ago, so I guess we just connect the dots,” Dart said during a news conference. The county has more infections than any other in Oklahoma, and “we’ve had some significant events in the past few weeks that more than likely contributed to that,” he added.

Advertisement

While the event drew just a paltry 6,200 people, most attendees did not wear masks, despite them being provided. Dart had previously urged the campaign to push back the rally, fearing precisely the rise in cases that it seems to have set off.

Leanne Stephens, a spokeswoman for the health department, would not disclose whether contact tracing had confirmed a link between the rally and the high number of cases, telling the New York Times that it “will not publicly identify any individual or facility at risk of exposure, or where transmission occurred”

The arena, which holds 19,000, is large enough that attendees could have spread out. This would have had the dual benefits of making the stands look fuller and giving people the space to social distance. Instead, they packed in like chickens in a factory farm. It’s almost as if Trump...wants his biggest supporters to die? Or probably more accurately, he just doesn’t care what happens to them once the cheering stops and they’ve gone home for the night.

Night blogger at Jezebel

Share This Story

Get our newsletter

DISCUSSION

So why the hell will they not release contact tracing info? In a case like this, if they know multiple people were there and infected there is no way to contact everyone they came in contact with since they don’t even know who was at the rally. So you release the fact that the rally could be a hot spot and encourage anyone who was there to go get tested. That is the entire point of contact tracing, to find hot spots like this.