Asked during the debate why he’s holding the events, Trump said, “Because people want to hear what I have to say. I’m doing a great job as president and I’ll have 25, 35,000 people show up at airports.”
“Are you not worried about the disease issues, sir?” moderator Chris Wallace interjected.
“So far, we have had no problem whatsoever,” Trump said. “It’s outside, that’s a big difference, according to the experts. And we do them outside, we have tremendous crowds, as you see. And literally on 24 hours notice. And Joe does the circles and has three people some place.”
Trump held an indoor rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma in June, but has since held events outside. Tulsa City-County Health Department Director Dr. Bruce Dart said the event “likely contributed” to an increase in cases of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus in the area.
The virus causes COVID-19, a disease.
Biden, who has routinely held small events since March, argued that the large gatherings are a health risk because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“He’s been totally irresponsible, the way in which he’s handled the social distancing and people wearing masks, basically encouraging them not to,” Biden said. “He’s a fool on this.”
“If you could get the crowds, you would have done the same thing,” Trump responded, before Wallace moved them on to another topic.
Biden later said that he sees the economy taking a back seat to dealing with the pandemic.
“The idea that he’s insisting that we go forward and open when you have almost half the states in America with a significant increase in COVID deaths and COVID cases, in the United States of America,” he said.
Health experts say the number of cases isn’t necessarily relevant, though there has been a large increase in recent days in some states. The number of deaths hasn’t risen sharply in many states. Hospitalizations also have not risen significantly in most states.
“And he wants to open it up more. Why’s he want to open it up?” Biden said. “You can’t fix the economy until you fix the COVID crisis.”