- The Washington Times - Friday, October 9, 2020

President Trump is expected to host hundreds of people on the South Lawn of the White House on Saturday in a rally-style event.

Sources familiar with the planning said the president is likely to deliver remarks on law and order, with one person calling the crowd “peaceful protesters” — a reference to his supporters at campaign rallies.

It will be the president’s first public appearance since he announced a week ago that he was diagnosed with COVID-19. Mr. Trump said Friday he feels “perfect” and that he is no longer suffering symptoms of the virus.

One source familiar with the planning said the president will address the group from a White House balcony. Mr. Trump was discharged from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Monday.

Dr. Sean P. Conley, the president’s personal physician, said that Saturday will be the 10th day since Mr. Trump’s diagnosis, and that he could be able to hold public events again on that day.

“Based on the trajectory of advanced diagnostics the team has been conducting, I fully anticipate the president’s safe return to public engagements at that time,” Dr. Conley said on Thursday in a memo.

SEE ALSO: Trump to hold first official campaign rally since COVID-19 diagnosis in Florida on Monday

While ethics laws such as the Hatch Act prohibit political events on government property, Mr. Trump has said the Hatch Act doesn’t apply to the president.

The White House hasn’t characterized the speech on Saturday as a campaign event, although Mr. Trump did give his acceptance speech for the GOP nomination in late August on the South Lawn. The convention’s climax was relocated to the White House after coronavirus restrictions forced the cancellation of events in North Carolina and Florida.

A source with knowledge of the planning of Saturday’s event said all attendees must bring a mask with them and will be instructed to wear it in the White House complex. “All attendees must submit to a Covid-19 screening tomorrow morning,” the person said. “This will consist of a temperature check and a brief questionnaire. The health and safety of all attendees is our priority and following CDC guidelines is strongly encouraged.”

• Dave Boyer can be reached at dboyer@washingtontimes.com.

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