Democratic lawmakers, celebrities and others mocked President TrumpDonald TrumpNYT: Rep. Perry played role in alleged Trump plan to oust acting AG Arizona GOP censures top state Republicans McCain, Flake and Ducey Biden and UK prime minister discuss NATO, multilateralism during call MORE after attendance appeared to be lower than expected at his Saturday campaign rally in Tulsa, Okla.

Reporters at the rally shared photos and video of the crowd at the BOK Center in Tulsa before Vice President Pence addressed supporters ahead of the president's speech.

Inside the arena, there were empty spots on the floor and in the upper levels. 

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The Trump campaign in a statement blamed the attendance on media and protesters in the area surrounding the arena.

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"President Trump is rallying in Tulsa with thousands of energetic supporters, a stark contrast to the sleepy campaign being run by Joe BidenJoe BidenDC residents jumped at opportunity to pay for meals for National Guardsmen Joe Biden might bring 'unity' – to the Middle East Biden shouldn't let defeating cancer take a backseat to COVID MORE from his basement in Delaware," communications director Tim Murtaugh said in a statement.

"Sadly, protestors interfered with supporters, even blocking access to the metal detectors, which prevented people from entering the rally," he added. 

The Trump campaign said that it had received more than 1 million ticket requests ahead of the rally. It also canceled planned addresses from the president and Pence at a separate stage outside the arena ahead of the rally. 

Many were quick to take to social media to jab the president over the event's attendance following images and video captured on the ground.  

Rep Ted LieuTed W. LieuHouse Democrats introduce measures to oppose Trump's bomb sale to Saudis Washington state rep joins list of Republicans voting to impeach Trump Growing number of GOP lawmakers say they support impeachment MORE (D-Calif.) tweeted ahead of the event, “Why so many empty seats at the #TrumpsCoronavirusRally? A. Seeing @POTUS is not worth dying B. @realDonaldTrump’s base shrank so much they can’t even fill an arena in a red state C. Campaign lied about how many people got tickets D. Knives Out is now available on Amazon Prime.” 

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Lieu also mocked the president’s campaign after it canceled plans for Trump and Pence to address supporters in an overflow space outside the arena.

“I believe the correct word would be ‘underflow.’ The small number of people at the #TrumpTulsaRally has now become a big embarrassment for @realDonaldTrump,” he wrote.

Rhode Island Rep. David CicillineDavid CicillineK Street navigates virtual inauguration week Washington state rep joins list of Republicans voting to impeach Trump Growing number of GOP lawmakers say they support impeachment MORE (D) joked, “This is President Trump’s Fyre Fest,” referencing the failed 2017 music festival. 

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Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-Pa.), wrote, “The last time I saw a crowd this small was Trump’s Inauguration.”

 

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Former White House press secretary Sean SpicerSean Michael SpicerSean Spicer applies to join White House Correspondents' Association GOP lawmakers are showing up more frequently on Newsmax Making America dull again MORE told reporters in 2017 that Trump's inauguration had "the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period, both in person and around the globe."

The assertion has been widely refuted.

Veteran journalist Dan Rather wrote, “Paging Sean Spicer for a crowd estimate in Tulsa.”

Former Sen. Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillFor Biden, a Senate trial could aid bipartisanship around COVID relief Lobbying world Former McCaskill aides launch PAC seeking to thwart Hawley MORE (D-Mo.) called the Trump campaign’s statement blaming protesters and the media “complete and total bullshit” and the “Trump campaign version of dog ate my homework.”

Others also jabbed the Trump campaign over the size of the crowd.

Musician Pink tweeted, "I think I sold that same place out in five minutes." 


The decision to hold the Tulsa rally has been viewed by some as controversial amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Coronavirus cases have spiked in Oklahoma in recent days, and the Trump campaign confirmed Saturday that six staffers who traveled to Tulsa ahead of the rally had tested positive for the coronavirus. 

Tulsa's health director last week voiced concerns about the rally, saying that the indoor event produces a "huge risk" and that he wished "we could postpone this to a time when the virus isn’t as large a concern as it is today."