President Donald Trumps 2020 campaign is accusing the mayor of Minneapolis of abusing his office by trying to block an upcoming rally in the Minnesota city.
Trump is slated to appear at the Target Center on Oct. 10.
According to the campaign, Mayor Jacob Frey “is abusing the power of his office and attempting to extort President Trumps reelection campaign by conjuring a phony and outlandish bill for security in an effort to block a scheduled Keep America Great rally.”
The city government told the Target Center that the venue had to put up $530,000 for security and other costs linked to the event, even as the campaign told the arena that the U.S. Secret Service would be coordinating security, according to the campaign.
That amount was more than 26 times the estimated security costs for a health care rally held by President Barack Obama at the site in 2009.
The Target Center told the Trump campaign that it would have to pay the $530,000, or the rally couldnt be held at the venue.
The costs are a matter between the city and the Secret Service, the Trump campaign stated. Its threatening a lawsuit.
“We are well aware of Mayor Freys vocal partisan opposition to President Trump and calls to disrupt the rally,” read a letter from Trump law firm Jones Day to the Target Centers management firm. “This last-minute squeeze seems to be nothing but a pretextual political effort with serious First Amendment ramifications.”
“This is an outrageous abuse of power by a liberal mayor trying to deny the rights of his own citys residents just because he hates the President,” Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale said in a statement. “People want to hear from their President, and no mayor looking to beef up his resume for a run for higher office should stand in the way.”
Frey, other city officials, and the Target Center havent responded directly to the campaigns claims.
City officials previously told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune that they didnt know how much the rally would cost the city, but thought the event would be expensive.
Minneapolis City Attorney Susan Segal said “its not fair” for the city to pay the costs associated with the rally and other events, such as sporting events.
This is an outrageous abuse of power by a liberal mayor trying to deny the rights of his own citys residents just because he hates the President!
— Brad Parscale (@parscale) October 8, 2019
“Its an unfunded expense and it should be borne by those who are putting on the event or at least the venue operators, its an expense that should be accounted for,” Segal said. “It doesnt matter who the candidate is or what the event is, if its anticipated that there will be a need for additional response … a source of revenue for that needs to be found.”
About the rally, she added that “were optimistic that we will be able to recover much of the costs.”
Duluth, Minnesota, spokeswoman Kate Van Daele told the paper that the city didnt send the campaign an invoice for Trumps 2018 rally there because, historically, elected officials, “regardless of party,” dont respond to such invoices.
Trump and Frey traded barbs on Twitter on Oct. 7. Trump called Frey a “lightweight mayor” and called on Minnesota to “dump Frey and [Democratic Rep. Ilhan] Omar” and “Make America Great Again!”
Frey responded by saying: “Yawn. … Welcome to Minneapolis where we pay our bills, we govern with integrity, and we love all of our neighbors.”
A day prior, Frey shared a message from Minnesotas Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party that called on people to donate in response to Trump visiting Minnesota.
“Trump is coming to Minnesota this week to break our blue wall and flip our state red in 2020. That cant happen. Were launching a #MoneyBlizzard to make sure we have the resources to fight back against his hateful campaign,” the left-wing party stated.
Heres why this is bad news for Dems everywhere: 1) Donald Trump came within 1.5 percentage points (or 44,470 votes) of winning statewide in Minnesota in 2016. Thats the 2nd closest Democratic state in the country after New Hampshire. pic.twitter.com/KBU3ln8uJq
— Minnesota DFL Party (@MinnesotaDFL) October 7, 2019
The party noted that Trump lost to Hillary Clinton in Minnesota by only 1.5 percentage points in 2016 and called Trumps visit “bad news for Dems everywhere.”
“Trump almost winning Minnesota was not a fluke. Minnesota, one of the last bastions of progressivism in the Midwest, has been trending more and more red in the last few presidential elections,” the party sRead More – Source