Pence cancels campaign bus tour stops in Florida amid coronavirus spike

The vice president just made a noteworthy schedule change.

The Hill reports that Mike Pence just called off a Florida bus tour that was scheduled for this week due to the state’s rising number of coronavirus cases. 

Tour stop postponed

The event, part of the so-called “Great American Comeback Tour,” was scheduled to kick off with a stop in Lake Wales, Florida this week. But now that won’t happen, and on Saturday, the pro-Trump America First Policies group explained why.

“Out of an abundance of caution at this time, we are postponing the Great American Comeback tour stop in Florida,” the group tweeted.

An “abundance of caution” no doubt refers to the current coronavirus situation in Florida, which has seen cases rise fivefold in a period of just two weeks, according to The New York Times.

It was also noted by The Hill that “for the third time in four days, Florida broke its record for new daily cases of COVID-19.”

Indeed, on Saturday alone, the Florida Department of Health reported almost 10,000 new coronavirus cases, and the numbers were similar to those recorded on the preceding two days. Altogether, this surge has brought the state’s total number of cases up to over 132,500 with nearly 3,400 deaths, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

Rallies under fire

For this reason alone, it was probably smart for the bus tour to be postponed or even canceled. But, the decision also makes sense in light of the criticism that President Donald Trump and his 2020 campaign received for holding rallies in both Arizona and Oklahoma in recent days.

Pence, for his part, has not backed down, defending those campaign events at a recent press briefing.

“The freedom of speech, the right to peaceably assemble is enshrined in the Constitution in the United States, and we have an election coming up this fall,” Pence said, according to CNBC.

Rescheduling promised

For those who are disappointed by Pence’s cancellation of the bus tour, America First Policies did say that “we look forward to rescheduling soon,” although no future date has been announced.

Be that as it may, The Hill reports that Pence is still planning on making a trip to Florida this week. As head of the White House’s coronavirus task force, the vice president is scheduled to meet with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) as well as top state health officials.

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