Trump campaign refutes AOC boast that teens sabotaged president's rally
The Saturday rally drew fewer people than expected.
June 21, 2020 - 2:43pm
The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook
The president's first campaign rally in months drew a smaller crowd than anticipated on Saturday in Tulsa, Oklahoma. After Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale tweeted that protestors prevented some people from getting into the rally, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez responded by saying that the Trump campaign experienced an artificially inflated number of ticket requests.
"Radical protestors, fueled by a week of apocalyptic media coverage, interfered with @realDonaldTrump supporters at the rally," Parscale tweeted. "They even blocked access to the metal detectors, preventing people from entering."
The New York Democratic congresswoman retweeted Parscale and said, "Actually you just got ROCKED by teens on TikTok who flooded the Trump campaign w/ fake ticket reservations & tricked you into believing a million people wanted your white supremacist open mic enough to pack an arena during COVID."
The New York Times reported that users of the social media platform TikTok and fans of Korean pop music groups claim to have inflated rally registration numbers by signing up for tickets online.
Parscale on Monday had tweeted that the campaign received more than one million ticket requests ahead of the rally. But there reportedly were thousands of empty seats inside the Bank of Oklahoma's BOK Center during the rally.
In a statement on Sunday, Parscale explained that the campaign identifies fake phone numbers in rally registrations when figuring the potential number of people who may attend. He also noted that people do not need to pre-register to gain admission to the president's rallies.
"Leftists and online trolls doing a victory lap, thinking they somehow impacted rally attendance, don’t know what they’re talking about or how our rallies work," he said in the statement. "Reporters who wrote gleefully about TikTok and K-Pop fans - without contacting the campaign for comment - behaved unprofessionally and were willing dupes to the charade. Registering for a rally means you’ve RSVPed with a cell phone number and we constantly weed out bogus numbers, as we did with tens of thousands at the Tulsa rally, in calculating our possible attendee pool.
"These phony ticket requests never factor into our thinking," he said. "What makes this lame attempt at hacking our events even more foolish is the fact that every rally is general admission - entry is on a first-come-first-served basis and prior registration is not required."
Parscale sharply criticized the media, saying that people chose not to attend the rally due to media warnings about coronavirus and protestors.
"The fact is that a week’s worth of the fake news media warning people away from the rally because of COVID and protestors, coupled with recent images of American cities on fire, had a real impact on people bringing their families and children to the rally," Parsacla said. "MSNBC was among outlets reporting that protesters even blocked entrances to the rally at times. For the media to now celebrate the fear that they helped create is disgusting, but typical."
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