Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

President Donald Trump speaks to supporters during a rally at the Van Andel Arena on March 28, 2019 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. (Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump speaks to supporters during a rally at the Van Andel Arena on March 28, 2019 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. (Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Bernie Sanders Says Beyond Belief That 'Extraordinary Narcissist' Trump Would Sacrifice Lives to Hold Tulsa Rally

"The leader of the United States government is defying science in order to hear cheers from his supporters," said the Senator from Vermont.

Jon Queally

On Monday, the largest newspaper in Tulsa, Oklahoma declared in an editorial that President Donald Trump is "not welcome" to hold a campaign rally in the city set for this weekend.

On Tuesday, a local judge denied an effort by city officials, businesses, and non-profits in Tulsa to force the president to enforce social distancing and other safety protocols if the event was, in fact, held.

Meanwhile, public health officials have warned the crowding approximately 19,000 people into the indoor BOK Center arena represents an "extraordinarily dangerous" risk to both attendees and others in the community due to the chance of Covid-19 spread. Even Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) in the Trump adminstration, said this week that he would not attend such a rally. "Of course not," Fauci told The Daily Beast.

But as Trump has vowed to go through with the event regardless of the numerous objections, Sen. Bernie Sanders on Wednesday told the Associated Press in an interview that it was beyond belief that the Republican president would do such a thing.

"I find it literally incomprehensible that the president, who is an extraordinary narcissist, is willing to sacrifice the health not only of the people who attend his indoor rally, but those people who come into contact with the people who attend the indoor rally," Sanders told the AP.

"You have public officials in Oklahoma begging him not to do this rally,' Sanders added. "It is in defiance of what science is telling us is appropriate. And the leader of the United States government is defying science in order to hear cheers from his supporters. It is incredibly irresponsible."

As the AP notes, even Oklahoma Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt suggested that Trump move the rally to an outside venue with more space for distancing, but was rebuffed.

"As in any event you assume a personal risk. That is just what you do," said White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany on Wednesday. "When you go to a baseball game, you assume a risk. That's part of life. It's a personal decision of Americans as to whether to go to the rally or whether not to go to the rally."

Last weekend, Leanne Stephens, a spokesperson for the Tulsa Department of Health, explained to Forbes that the chief concern was "about the safety of any large gathering of people in enclosed spaces where social distancing is difficult to maintain." And the department's director made his position clear: "I wish we could postpone this."

And as the Tulsa World editorial begging Trump not to come put it on Monday, "Tulsa is still dealing with the challenges created by a pandemic. The city and state have authorized reopening, but that doesn't make a mass indoor gathering of people pressed closely together and cheering a good idea."

"We don't know why he chose Tulsa," the editorial stated, "but we can't see any way that his visit will be good for the city."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

Senate Dems Propose Talking Filibuster for Voting Rights

"If Senate Democrats can find the political courage this moment requires, they have the tools right now to pass voting rights legislation and save our democracy."

Jessica Corbett ·


94% of AZ Progressives Support Primary Challenge if Sinema Kills Voting Rights

"Sinema can betray Arizonans, but there aren't enough pharma lobbyists in the world to keep her in office if she does."

Brett Wilkins ·


Dems Urged to Hold Senate Floor for 'As Long As It Takes'

"Call your senators now and tell them to hold the floor, keep the debate going, and fix or ditch the filibuster to pass democracy reform," says Indivisible.

Jessica Corbett ·


Exxon Net-Zero Plan Called Greenwashing From 'Climate Liar'

"Exxon and Big Oil's whole strategy is to pretend that fossil fuels can be part of the solution so that they can delay the adoption of renewables another year and keep profiting from oil and gas."

Julia Conley ·


Rising US Renewables Expected to Spur Decline in Fracked Gas

"Renewable energy is starting to do to natural gas what natural gas did to coal."

Kenny Stancil ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo