Democratic lawmakers, celebrities and others mocked President TrumpDonald TrumpTexas announces election audit in four counties after Trump demand Schumer sets Monday showdown on debt ceiling-government funding bill Pennsylvania AG sues to block GOP subpoenas in election probe 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.
As others are reporting, looks like attendance here in Tulsa is well below campaign's expectations. Here's the main floor at the arena currently pic.twitter.com/EASfSHL5nN— Steadman™ (@AsteadWesley) June 20, 2020
Update: outdoor area has completely emptied out. pic.twitter.com/XS8M0IJRFc— Abby D. Phillip (@abbydphillip) June 20, 2020
The Trump campaign in a statement blamed the attendance on media and protesters in the area surrounding the arena.
"President Trump is rallying in Tulsa with thousands of energetic supporters, a stark contrast to the sleepy campaign being run by Joe BidenJoe BidenTexas announces election audit in four counties after Trump demand Pennsylvania AG sues to block GOP subpoenas in election probe House passes sweeping defense policy bill 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. LieuMcCarthy jokes it'll be hard not to 'hit' Pelosi with gavel if he is Speaker Court finds Democratic donor Ed Buck guilty of all charges in connection to two men's deaths Press: Give those unemployed writers a job! 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.”
Why so many empty seats at the #TrumpsCoronavirusRally?— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) June 21, 2020
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 https://t.co/R7juOjiNXn
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 CicillineDemocrats seek to cool simmering tensions Hillicon Valley —Apple is not a monopoly, judge rules Judge rules Apple is not 'illegal monopolist' in high-profile Epic case MORE (D) joked, “This is President Trump’s Fyre Fest,” referencing the failed 2017 music festival.
This is President Trump’s Fyre Fest. pic.twitter.com/USYQ6e94gM— David Cicilline (@davidcicilline) June 20, 2020
Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-Pa.), wrote, “The last time I saw a crowd this small was Trump’s Inauguration.”
The last time I saw a crowd this small was Trump’s Inauguration https://t.co/iTxRdgnvdv— US Rep Brendan Boyle (@RepBrendanBoyle) June 20, 2020
Former White House press secretary Sean SpicerSean Michael SpicerOvernight Defense & National Security — Iron Dome funding clears House Sean Spicer, Russ Vought sue Biden over Naval Board removal Psaki defends move to oust Trump appointees from military academy boards 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.”
Paging Sean Spicer for a crowd estimate in Tulsa— Dan Rather (@DanRather) June 20, 2020
Former Sen. Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillRepublicans may regret restricting reproductive rights Sunday shows preview: States deal with fallout of Ida; Texas abortion law takes effect Giuliani to stump for Greitens in Missouri 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.”
Complete and total bullshit. https://t.co/IRFZuXiIGL— Claire McCaskill (@clairecmc) June 20, 2020
Of course. It was the peaceful protesters who scared off the Trump supporters. Right. Oh, and the scary media.— Claire McCaskill (@clairecmc) June 20, 2020
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."
This Trump rally is like a scene from Spinal Tap.... All that is missing is a tiny sculpture of Stonehenge. https://t.co/hsnjmWqsYc— Meghan McCainMeghan Marguerite McCainWhoopi Goldberg signs four-year deal with ABC to stay on 'The View' Meghan McCain: Country has not 'healed' from Trump under Biden Comedian Norm Macdonald dies following battle with cancer: report MORE (@MeghanMcCain) June 20, 2020
Mom always said never plan a party for people who won’t come. https://t.co/FgU9qPGY3r— Connie Schultz (@ConnieSchultz) June 20, 2020
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."