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Trump at a Jacksonville rally in 2016. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Trump's acceptance speech as the 2020 Republican presidential nominee will be relocated from Charlotte, North Carolina to Jacksonville, Florida, RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel announced on Thursday.

Why it matters: President Trump and the RNC pulled the acceptance speech out of North Carolina after Gov. Roy Cooper (D) said he would require the convention to be downsized due to COVID-19. The event is expected to draw around 50,000 people.

  • Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) and Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry (R) have welcomed the crowds.
  • Curry tweeted earlier this month: "A $100 million local impact event would be important for our city as an event/convention destination. The City is ready for world class events & ready [to] show the world we are open for business"

Details: The convention will take place Aug. 24-27 as originally planned, News 4 Jax reports. The acceptance speech will now be held at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville.

Of note: RNC business will still take place in Charlotte.

Between the lines: Jacksonville offers unique political advantages for Trump.

  • Florida is a key target for Republicans in 2020, with the swing state holding 29 electoral college votes.
  • Trump is registered to vote in Florida and announced his re-election campaign in Orlando.
  • Jacksonville also shares a media market with southern Georgia. Democrats are hoping to flip the state blue in 2020 after gaining momentum in the 2018 midterms.

But Axios' Jonathan Swan notes that none of the electoral 2020 politics informed the location decision-making. Instead, the choice was solely about giving Trump the unrestrained crowd he wants, per officials with direct knowledge.

Yes, but: Florida has seen an increase in coronavirus cases in recent weeks as the state has begun to gradually reopen. Some residents fear a convention could kickstart a resurgence, the Florida Times-Union reports.

Go deeper

The top Republicans who aren't voting for Trump in 2020

Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said last week that he cannot support President Trump's re-election.

Why it matters: Hogan, a moderate governor in a blue state, joins other prominent Republicans who have publicly said they will either not vote for Trump's re-election this November or will back Biden.

DOJ cites discrimination in lawsuit against Texas over voting districts

Attorney General Merrick Garland delivers remarks at the 2021 Tribal Nations Summit at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on Nov. 15, 2021. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The Department of Justice on Monday filed a lawsuit against Texas, alleging Republican state lawmakers discriminated against Black and Latino voters and "again.. diluted the voting strength of minority Texans" when they approved new redistricting maps.

Why it matters: A DOJ assessment of the new districts found that they violate Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, Attorney General Merrick Garland said at a press conference.

1 hour ago - World

Biden to warn Putin U.S. will add troops in Eastern Europe if Russia invades Ukraine

Putin meets Biden in Geneva. Photo: Peter Klaunzer - Pool/Keystone via Getty

President Biden will warn Russian President Vladimir Putin when they speak on Tuesday that if Russia invades Ukraine, the U.S. is prepared to increase its troop presence, capabilities and military exercises on NATO's "eastern flank," a senior administration official told reporters.

Why it matters: The administration believes it's increasingly likely that Putin will order an invasion.