A group of Michigan physicians are urging President Donald Trump to cancel his Saturday rally in Muskegon as the state is seeing cases of COVID-19 increase.
Friday, the Committee to Protect Medicare, an advocacy group, held a press conference to discuss their concerns about the rally and the president's comments on the virus.
Dr. Rob Davidson, the executive director of the organization and former Democratic candidate for congress, said the president is using his platform to spread "medically inaccurate misinformation" about the pandemic.
"Instead of coming to Muskegon to continue spreading misinformation and packing people close together when COVID-19 cases are going up, President Trump should cancel his campaign event and focus on fighting this pandemic with science and evidence," he said.
The president is holding his campaign event at FlyBy Air at the Muskegon County Airport at 5 p.m. on Saturday. The rally will be outside, and the campaign does encourage attendees to wear masks.
Dr. Susan Fabrick, a family physician from Muskegon Heights, said people who are not showing symptoms could end up spreading the virus.
“From a medical perspective, we’re concerned that President Trump’s rallies will pack thousands of people from across West Michigan into a small space, with many people not wearing masks and nobody observing social distancing, which is a recipe for accelerating the spread of COVID-19 in a part of the state that is seeing a significant and alarming rise in cases,” she said.
Fabrick is also concerned about some of the things the president has said about COVID-19.
"Despite the President's claim that he is immune and that anyone who has had COVID-19 is now also immune, we don't know in fact if people are immune to COVID-19," said Fabrick.
On Friday, Michigan reported 2,015 daily cases of COVID-19, the second day in a row the case count exceeded 2,000. The 7-day average is also trending upward, towards levels the state saw in April at the peak of the pandemic.
Trump is two weeks out from testing positive for COVID-19, and after being cleared by doctors he hit the campaign trail again. At his recent events in other states, billboards calling the rallies "superspeader" events have popped up.
In Muskegon, an activist planned to display similar billboards on US-31 ahead of the event, saying "enter at your own risk" and "Trump superspreader event."
While some are critical of the rally, officials are expecting large crowds to attend. Trump will only be the fourth sitting president to stop in Muskegon County. The CEO of FlyBy Air said they plan to see 10,000 people at the rally.
Muskegon County Republican Party volunteer Sandy Kempf said their phone was ringing off the hook this week, and she was "very excited."
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