As part of the BOK Center’s safety plan for the June 20 rally, the arena’s management had purchased 12,000 do-not-sit stickers to keep people out, leaving open spaces among participants, according to the Post.
Then, on the day of the race, when the event staff had already placed the stickers in almost every other position in the 19,000-seat arena, Trump’s campaign told the event’s management to stop and then began removing the stickers, according to with a person familiar with the event who spoke to the Washington Post about anonymity to discuss internal issues.
Tim Murtaugh, communications director for the Trump campaign, did not comment on the removal of the stickers, but reacted to the health precautions taken for the event in a statement to CNN.
“The rally fully complied with local requirements. In addition, each participant in the rally received a temperature test before entering, received a face mask and provided plenty of access to hand sanitizers,” Murtaugh said on Saturday.
The stickers were removed from the arena before the event, according to the group’s reporters, who noted that the stickers that once appeared on the posts hours ago had almost run out all Saturday afternoon. The stickers were removed before the public was allowed to enter the arena, according to billiards reports.
Meanwhile, in a video clip taken by the Post, two men, one in a suit and one wearing a badge and face mask, appear to be pulling stickers from the seats in a section of the arena. The identities of the men are unclear.
Following the implementation of the majority of stickers, a member of Trump’s campaign sent radio staff to the event hall where the arena administration was monitoring the preparations and told them to stop, according to the person familiar with the event who spoke to the Post. The event staff was asked to continue applying the stickers. Later, the campaign began pulling them, the individual said.
By the time Trump took the stage in the arena, participants did not seem to be following socially remote guidelines, instead of gathering together without empty seats. There are no stickers on the seats.
A group of local lawyers, in the days leading up to the match, sued to stop the event, unless the organizers agreed to take steps to comply with the same social distances of the administration to limit the spread of coronaio.
The lawyers in their message noted that the statistics of the health department of Talsa showed that the Monday that led to the scheduled rally on Saturday saw the highest number of cases of new crowns.
Neither Trump nor the White House have called for the stickers to be removed, a senior White House official told the Washington Post.
DJ Judd and CNN’s Ryan Nobles contributed to this story.