Charlotte city councilman says it wouldn’t be responsible to have an arena full of people for RNC

Coronavirus

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Charlotte City Councilman Larken Egleston on Tuesday said it would not be responsible to host the 2020 Republican National Convention in the city as planned, adding President Donald Trump should accept it’s going to look different.

His comments came a day after Trump threatened to pull the convention out of the city where it is scheduled to be held in late August. In a series of tweets, Trump lambasted North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper and contended that the Democrat is “unable to guarantee” that the arena can be filled to capacity. The President also demanded Republicans “immediately be given” an answer from Cooper on the convention’s future in the city.

“There’s no way for the governor at this point to say he could have an arena full of people or that Charlotte could have 50,000 people coming into town for any event. And frankly, I think the only thing you can say definitively is that wouldn’t be responsible three months from now,” Egleston, a Democrat, told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota on “New Day.” “So, if we’re going to host this convention, it’s going to have to look very different than we thought it was going to, and the President should acknowledge that.”

Trump tweeted later Monday that he has “zero interest” in hosting the convention at his Doral resort in Florida, adding that the “(b)allroom is not nearly big enough” and that he would like the convention to remain in North Carolina. Asked if there was any brainstorming on other possibilities of how the Republican convention could take place in the state, Egleston said, “There’s a lot of options if he is willing to concede like the Democrats have that health precautions and measures have to be taken for something like this to occur in any form or fashion.”

Cooper told CNN last week his decision on whether the state can hold large gatherings like the convention will be based on science and is not political.

“This is not political. This is not emotional. This is based on health experts, data and science and that’s it for everybody to see,” Cooper told CNN. “No one is being favored or disfavored over the other.”

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