Whistle stops or Zoom chats – What will a campaign for the 2020 election look like?

Whistle stops or Zoom chats – What will a campaign for the 2020 election look like?

June 15, 20203 min read


The race for 2020 is on. President Donald Trump has already scheduled his first rally in the very red-leaning Oklahoma whereas Joe Biden has been conducting digital town-halls and online events in his effort to reach voters.

Campaigning for president is a billion-dollar ordeal. It usually means months and months on the road; a different message being brought to a different audience and usually in a different state each night from August until November.


For President Trump, it seems he’s charging, head down – despite what many critics and officials have to say.


Yet Trump has continued to travel — even to states that still have restrictions — and announced this week that he’ll resume his signature campaign rallies beginning next Friday in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The state, which was among the earliest to begin loosening coronavirus restrictions, has a relatively low rate of infection but has seen cases rising.

“They’ve done a great job with COVID, as you know, the state of Oklahoma,” Trump said Wednesday.

Campaign officials chose the location knowing Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt would raise no objections. Stitt’s most recent reopening phase places no limits on the size of group gatherings. The campaign hopes the location will all but guarantee a large crowd, since Oklahoma is one of the most Republican states in the nation and Trump has never held a rally there as president.

Still, the reality could not be completely ignored.

“By clicking register below, you are acknowledging that an inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public place where people are present,” Trump’s campaign advised those signing up for the rally. “By attending the Rally, you and any guests voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19 and agree not to hold Donald J. Trump for President, Inc.” liable for illness or injury.

Trump is also planning events in Arizona and Florida — states where cases are on the upswing. In Arizona, hospitals have been told to prepare for the worst as hospitalizations have surged.

Trump this month decided that he would no longer hold the marquee event of the Republican National Convention —- his acceptance speech — in North Carolina after the state refused to guarantee that he could fill an arena to capacity with maskless supporters. It’s being moved to Jacksonville, Florida.  June 12 – Associated Press

But as the Trump campaign seems to be sticking to the old school playbook – what will the Democrats do?

Can campaigning on-line be effective?

Do voters really need to see a person and shake a hand to make a decision who to vote for?

Is it better to be safe or sorry when there is so much at stake?


If you are covering – then let our experts help with your questions and stories.

Mark Caleb Smith is the Director of the Center for Political Studies at Cedarville University. Mark is available to speak with media regarding the DNC Primary, running mates and the upcoming election. Simply click on his icon to arrange an interview.

Connect with:
  • Mark Caleb Smith, Ph.D.
    Mark Caleb Smith, Ph.D. Professor of Political Science

    Dr. Smith is an expert in American politics, campaigns & elections, and constitutional law.

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