President Trump is scheduled to speak at the Target Center in downtown Minneapolis on Thursday. At the eleventh hour, the boy Mayor of Minneapolis, Jacob Frey, has tried to block the rally by sending Target Center an absurd bill for “security.” The Star Tribune reports:
Tensions between Minneapolis city leaders and President Donald Trump’s campaign escalated Monday when the campaign threatened to sue the city for trying to force it to pay $530,000 for security during this week’s rally.
Trump’s campaign team said in a news release late Monday night that Mayor Jacob Frey is “abusing the power of his office” by “conjuring a phony and outlandish bill for security” to cover those costs for Thursday’s campaign rally.
That seems like a fair assessment.
City officials told the Target Center, which is managed by AEG, that it would be responsible for paying the costs. The center then allegedly tried to pass the bill on to Trump’s team and told them they would not be able to use the arena unless they agreed to the charges.
The Trump campaign is represented by the Jones, Day law firm. Tyler O’Neil quotes Jones, Day’s letter to AEG, the operators of Target Center:
Your letter of this morning on behalf of AEG threatening to terminate the rental contract at the last minute seems to rest on a representation by the City of Minneapolis that, without any apparent backup support, that “additional security and related costs” associated with the rally will be $530,000. You claim it is somehow the Campaign’s responsibility to “coordinate” these additional services and expenses, “including arrangements for payment to be made directly by [the Campaign] to the City, in advance of” the rally. If the Campaign does not, you assert, AEG will deem it a default or force majeure and cancel the contract.
Your position is clearly wrong under the plain wording of the contract. Neither the Campaign nor AEG is responsible for arranging or paying for rally-related security. Rather, the U.S. Secret Service – and the U.S. Secret Service alone – is “solely and directly” responsible for coordinating law enforcement services in connection with the rally. “As such, no law enforcement costs shall be coordinated by [AEG], charged through [AEG] to [the Campaign], or shall otherwise be reimbursable expenses in connection with the [contract].” The Campaign cannot be in breach of an obligation it does not owe to AEG. Yet AEG’s failure to deliver the Target Center on October 9 would be a breach of contract, and the Campaign will aggressively pursue all remedies available to it in law or equity – not to mention in the court of public opinion. (Emphasis added.)
The City’s demand is particularly ridiculous in view of the fact that the security cost for President Obama’s 2009 appearance at the Target Center was reported to be $20,000, 1/26th of what Frey is trying to charge President Trump.
It is obvious what is going on here. Frey is on record saying he regrets that “there is no legal mechanism to prevent the president from visiting.” He has now conjured up the ridiculous security theory in order to scuttle Trump’s appearance, as a grandstanding ploy to enhance his popularity in a city that is struggling with rising violent crime and lack of economic development.
In related news, the Minneapolis Police Department, on the day after Trump’s visit was announced, “banned officers from wearing their uniforms in support of candidates at political events or in ads.” The Minneapolis police union has responded by selling t-shirts that say “Cops for Trump.”
This is one more example out of thousands of how the Democratic Party is violating every norm that makes non-violent civic life possible.