Speaking at the White House Wednesday afternoon, Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany was pressed by a reporter about why President Trump held a rally last night in North Carolina when local restrictions still limit gatherings to 50 people.
"Why did the President have thousands of people, many not wearing masks, at a rally last night in [North Carolina], in a state that has limited gatherings to 50 people? Why is he going to Nevada this weekend to hold similar outdoor rallies?...in violation of his administration's own guidance and the best advice and guidance of local officials?" the reporter asked.
"People have a First Amendment right if they so choose to show up and express their political opinion in the form of a peaceful protest which is what the President held, there's a real double standard here. CNN had on a guest, apparently a doctor, Rob Davidson, who said, 'Now true there are social distancing issues with regard to the protests we've seen around the country however this is a public health crisis, they are marching against systemic racism,'" McEnany responded. "So, if you're allowed to march in aggregate in those protests, you're also allowed to show up at a political rally. You have a First Amendment right in this country."
"We believe that if people want to show up and express their political views that's their choice to do so. We hand out masks, we encourage individuals to wear those masks. A lot of people did, I was in North Carolina last night and saw it. We give out hand sanitizer but at the end of the day, if you want to join a peaceful protest you can do so and there's no reason just like the protests we've seen in the streets, you can't show up and express your political viewpoint at a rally," she continued.
REPORTER: "Why did the President have thousands of people, many not wearing masks, at a rally last night?"— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) September 9, 2020
McENANY: "People have a first amendment right, if they so choose, to show up and express their political opinion in the form of a peaceful protest..." pic.twitter.com/znBbufXOGP