Donald Trump raged against his then-campaign manager Brad Parscale in the aftermath of his disastrous Tulsa campaign rally, complaining his top re-election official ‘f***ed up everything.’
The then-president was left furious after his June 20, 2020, rally – which was supposed to be his post-COVID comeback to the campaign trail – was filled with empty seats.
‘Has Brad actually ever done anything right?’ Trump said in an Oval Office meeting after the event. ‘He’s f***ed up everything.’
‘How can you be so stupid? Answer me!,’ he told Parscale.
The campaign manager tried to defend himself, revealed Michael Wolff in his forthcoming book ‘Landslide,’ but Trump wouldn’t let up.
‘Stupid, stupid, stupid . . . just tell me how stupid you can possibly be? I want to know. Really. Tell me.’
Parscale denied the events outlined in the book took place.
‘The excerpts from Wolfe’s Trump book are complete bulls***. No one yelled at me about Tulsa. My company has helped crowd build for Trump rallies for 6 years. We have helped build crowds for 600+ rallies, including the last two rallies,’ he wrote on Twitter.
President Donald Trump was furious with his then-campaign manager Brad Parscale after the June 2020 Tulsa rally (above) had rows of empty seats
The next day, Trump and Jared Kushner, his son-in-law and White House adviser, demoted Parscale, and turned the re-election campaign over to Parscale’s deputy, Bill Stepien.
Details of Trump’s fury were revealed in an excerpt of Wolff’s book published by The Times. Wolff’s book is out July 13.
Parscale set high expectations for the rally, tweeting five days ahead of if: ‘Over 1M ticket requests for the @realDonaldTrump #MAGA Rally in Tulsa on Saturday.’
The Tulsa rally was painted as the event that would reset the Trump campaign, bring the president back up in the polls, and let Trump enjoy the cheers of supporters – the kind of energy he craves and thrives off of.
It was to be the first campaign event after the original round of COVID lockdowns and since Joe Biden secured the Democratic nomination.
But when Trump entered the BOK Center, a 19,000 seat arena, he saw rows and rows of empty blue seats.
Only 6,200 people attended, according to Tulsa officials.
Trump raged that Brad Parscale ‘f***ed up everything’; above Parscale at the Tulsa rally
Tulsa rally was supposed to be Trump’s comeback after a round of COVID lockdowns but rally was a bust – 6,200 people showed up in 19,000 seat arena
Ahead of his arrival, his campaign frantically texted supporters that seats were available but the supporters didn’t materialize. Officials ended up having to cancel a planned stop for Trump at an overflow area outside the arena. The overflow area was empty.
Michael Wolff’s book ‘Landslide’ is July 13
Trump’s campaign later privately admitted that as many as 300,000 of the people who signed up for event were online tricksters. Anyone from anywhere could request a ticket through the campaign’s website.
After going through the signups, the campaign determined that around 300,000 were fake, Politico reported, and, after analyzing the data further, determined that between 200,000 and 300,000 people lived in driving distance.
The worst case scenario was that 60,000 people would show up.
Their estimates were off by thousands and a furious Trump yelled at his staff backstage at the BOK Center before he went out to address the supporters who did show up.
The Trump campaign blamed the ‘fake news media’ for ‘warning people away from the rally’ over COVID-19 and protests against racial injustice around the country.
Ahead of the rally, Tulsa health officials warned there could be a spike in COVID cases from it – several Trump campaign staff members had to quarantine after it due to possible exposure.
Also, the original date of the rally was changed after organizers planned it for same day as the Tulsa race massacre, the 1921 event when mobs of white Tulsans attacked a prosperous black neighborhood, destroying businesses.