President Trump’s demands to hold the Republican 2020 convention inside a packed arena despite a still-raging pandemic appear to have taken one step closer to being met. The Washington Post reports that party officials have “tentatively settled” on Jacksonville, Florida, as the new location for Republican National Convention in August. Trump demanded that the convention be moved from its original host city of Charlotte because North Carolina officials declined to promise that they would allow the arena to be packed full of people due to the obvious public-health risk. Trump reportedly told North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper during a phone call late last month: “I don’t want to be sitting in a place that’s 50 percent empty... We can’t do social distancing.” Jacksonville has reportedly emerged as the front-runner to replace Charlotte, though there are some concerns the northern Florida city may not have enough hotel rooms to accommodate the event. Republican officials were reportedly in Jacksonville this week to scout out the city and surrounding areas. Florida is in the middle of a string of days with more than 1,000 new cases of coronavirus being reported.
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