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Gov. Walz asks presidential campaigns to adhere to COVID-19 guidelines while visiting Minnesota

"Please demonstrate that you value Minnesota by protecting the health of our communities," Walz's letter reads.

ST PAUL, Minn. — Both President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden are set to make campaign stops in Minnesota on Friday, but Gov. Tim Walz has sent their teams letters urging them to adhere to COVID-19 safety guidelines during their visit.

It is unclear where in the state Biden will be, but Trump is set to be in Bemidji at 4 p.m.

“COVID-19 continues to pose a threat to Minnesota,” Governor Walz says. “Over 1,900 Minnesotans have died from the virus, including more than 200 in the past month. Please demonstrate that you value Minnesota by protecting the health of our communities. Join us in our efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19, keep our businesses open, and get back to the activities we love.”

Current guidelines suggest that events should not go over 25% capacity, and not exceed 250 people, unless there is a larger venue with separated areas and each of those areas do not exceed 250 occupants and are able to maintain six feet of distance between each other.

A copy of the full letter below:

To the Presidential Campaigns of President Donald J. Trump and Vice President Joe Biden,

Minnesotans care deeply about democracy. We are highly engaged in the political process and are proud to have the highest voter turnout in the nation. As the election nears, Minnesotans look forward to hearing from political candidates about their vision for our state and country. That includes visits from both of your presidential campaigns this week. While we welcome the opportunity for Minnesotans to participate in democracy, we ask that your events comply with our state’s COVID-19 safety guidelines. Partner with us in the fight against COVID-19.

Minnesota’s Stay Safe Plan combats the spread of COVID-19 through various mitigation efforts. To comply with the relevant guidelines, your events generally must not exceed 25% capacity, not to exceed 250 people. You may be able to increase total attendance if you choose a venue with multiple event spaces with separate capacity limits, as long as you limit each separate space to the lesser of 250 people or 25% capacity. Attendees must maintain social distancing of at least six feet at all times, including when entering and exiting the event. Face coverings are required indoors and strongly encouraged outdoors. Complete guidance is available at: https://staysafe.mn.gov/industry-guidance/

For several weeks, the White House has encouraged us to “ensure compliance with current MN StaySafe Plan occupancy restrictions.” These rules are the best way to protect one another, allow our children to attend school, and keep our economy open. They are consistent with recommendations from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and from White House Coronavirus expert Dr. Deborah Birx. On a recent visit to Minnesota, Dr. Birx praised our state’s mitigation efforts. She stressed the importance of wearing face coverings, practicing social distancing, and avoiding large gatherings.

COVID-19 continues to pose a threat to Minnesota. Over 1,900 Minnesotans have died from the virus, including more than 200 in the past month. Please demonstrate that you value Minnesota by protecting the health of our communities. Join us in our efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19, keep our businesses open, and get back to the activities we love.

 Sincerely,

Tim Walz

Governor of Minnesota