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RNC_2016_Balloon_Drop.jpg Photo by Mark Reinstein/Corbis via Getty Images
Balloon drop at the conclusion of the Republican National Convention at the Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, Ohio, July 21, 2016.

GOP Florida Convention to Scale Down Due to COVID Threat

A COVID surge in Florida has prompted the Republican National Committee to scale down plans for its convention in Jacksonville next month.

The COVID crisis is crimping the plans of the Republican National Committee to host a barn-burner convention in Jacksonville, Fla., next month. The RNC already pulled many convention events from its original host city—Charlotte, N.C.—because the state would not promise to permit the big crowds indoors that President Donald Trump prefers. But the recent COVID surge in Florida is forcing a change in plans, CNN reports:

“The new plans will mean smaller crowds, fewer speeches and the use of indoor and outdoor venues in an attempt to salvage an in-person convention in the state of Florida, which has become one of the country's leading coronavirus hotspots. Attendance will be limited to the 2,500 regular RNC delegates for the first three days of the convention, with delegates allowed to bring one guest and alternate delegates also allowed to attend, capping total attendance at about 7,000 people.

The RNC is still planning on a four-day event in Jacksonville but will restrict access to the activities on the first three days to regular delegates only. The final night--when President Donald Trump accepts the nomination--will be open to delegates, their guests and alternate delegates. That will mean a much smaller crowd than what is usually expected from a nominating speech under traditional circumstances.

Convention organizers are also planning to offer hand sanitizer, masks and personal protective equipment, employ aggressive sanitizing protocols, and make Covid-19 testing "available." In the past, organizers had said that every single person who enters the convention perimeter would be given a Covid-19 test” … CNN

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