Donald Trump won’t be attending an election party at his DC hotel. The Trump campaign recently sent an invitation to the event to donors. “November 3rd will go down in history as the night we won FOUR MORE YEARS,” the invite said. “It will be absolutely EPIC, and the only thing that would make it better is having YOU there.” The invite didn’t explicitly promise that Trump would make an appearance, instead saying the event would be hosted by “Team Trump.” But it included a photo of Trump and Melania with the words “join us on election night” on top of it.
According to Eric Trump, the whole event will now likely be moved from the hotel to the White House, per Politico. PBS’ Yamiche Alcindor tweeted that Trump said DC Mayor Muriel Bowser was holding up his plans for an election night party at the hotel, and that while plans weren’t settled yet, he would “likely” stay at the White House. Bowser’s office says it hasn’t held up the event, and that its only communication with the hotel has been to remind it about the same Phase Two guidelines that apply to every DC business. In order to comply, the hotel would need to limit capacity to 50 percent and follow a number of other restrictive guidelines. A query to the hotel about whether the event would still happen there was referred to the Trump campaign, which has not yet responded.
It’s unclear why Trump decided to change the plan last-minute. It seems unlikely that he was worried about Covid safety, given his many other recent crowd-gathering activities. He also hasn’t previously seemed concerned about the perception that he is using the presidency to bolster his private businesses. Could it be that Trump is pessimistic about his prospects on Tuesday night?