Author: Sam Buisman
Wisconsin Representative Mark Pocan swings at President Trump with a new bill guaranteeing legal penalties for rally-holders if attendees contact COVID-19.
Through a press release, the Wisconsin congressman debuted the Refusal to Accept Losses or Liability In Every Situation Act (RALLIES) Act, which would nullify any liability waivers used by an organization hosting an indoor event of at least 1,000 people to shield itself from COVID-19-related lawsuits. The bill in its substance and namesake is a dig at President Trump, whose campaign team is resuming its trademark large, in-person rallies later this week but making attendees sign a waiver assuming all risk of catching COVID-19 at the rally.
In his own remarks on this bill, Representative Pocan made this intention clear.
“[T]his President wants the right to endanger thousands of people at an indoor stadium with impunity,” wrote Pocan in a press release. “We refuse to let a candidate for re-election threaten the lives of the people of this country for political gain.”
According to the Trump Campaign, Saturday’s rally in Tusla, Oklahoma, is expected to draw over 800,000 attendees. In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, critics have argued that such an event will encourage the spread of the infectious virus.
However, taking to Twitter, President Trump himself rejected this criticism as a double standard that wasn’t applied to the massive protests for George Floyd, writing that his detractors are “trying to Covid Shame us on our big Rallies.”
Representative Pocan’s bill is unlikely to pass through the Republican-controlled Senate, much less in time to affect Saturday’s rally.