President Donald Trump is confirming the Republican National Committee’s (RNC) plan to move forward with its in-person convention despite the coronavirus outbreak.
During a brief interview with the Washington Examiner before Thursday’s appearance at the Owens & Minor Distribution Center in Allentown, Pennsylvania, Trump was asked about the convention. He noted that the event will go on, as planned.
Despite the number of new coronavirus cases and death toll continuing to rise in the United States, Trump believes the country will be in “good shape” by time the conference is set to take place.
“We’re going to have a convention,” Trump said. “I’m a traditionalist. But we’ll have to see. You know, like everything else. But I think we’ll be in good shape by that time.”
Trump also mocked Democrats as he urged them to cancel the Democratic National Convention in an effort to “save money” since Joe Biden is the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee.
“I think that’s a good move when you have Biden as a candidate,” Trump said of the possible move to a virtual convention. “I think it’s a good move for them. Let them save money.”
The Republican National Convention is scheduled for August 24-27 in Charlotte, North Carolina. The Democratic National Committee (DNC) opted to postpone its July convention until August 17 citing concerns about the pandemic.
Although Republicans plan to move forward with their convention, Trump has expressed concerns about the possibility of North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper (D) prohibiting in-person, mass gatherings. Despite the coronavirus outbreak, Trump insists Cooper may interfere for political reasons.
“[North Carolina’s] got a Democrat governor, so we have to be a little bit careful with that because they’re playing politics,” he said.
Trump’s latest confirmation about the convention comes roughly a month after RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel echoed similar sentiments, insisting the convention is “full steam ahead.”