At least 7 Republican senators say they will not attend GOP convention
At least seven GOP senators have said they will not attend next month's Republican National Convention in Jacksonville, Fla., and more are rethinking their visits.
Why it matters: For some, like 86-year-old Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and 80-year-old Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), the decision not to attend underscores broader concerns about holding mass gatherings in the coronavirus era. For others, like Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah), the nominating convention for President Trump is politically unsavory.
- Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa)
- Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah)
- Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine)
- Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska)
- Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.)
- Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.)
- Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kansas)
What to watch: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell described the RNC's timing during a pandemic "a challenging situation," and he said he will determine in late August whether the convention will be safe.
- Sen Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.) said Thursday he's considering not attending, WISN reports.
The big picture: New coronavirus cases in Florida have surged in recent weeks, with the state reporting over 15,000 new cases in a single day last weekend.
- The RNC has not reconsidered holding Trump's acceptance speech in Jacksonville despite the increase in cases, though it will require daily coronavirus tests and temperature checks for attendees.
- The city Jacksonville itself has issued a public face mask requirement.