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TRUMP IN THE MED CITY: Rochester prepares for President’s arrival

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Donald Trump

ROCHESTER, Minn. (FOX47) -- President Donald Trump will return to the Med City Friday for one last push ahead of election day.

Rochester's Mayor Kim Norton says that while Donald Trump's last minute stop in Rochester comes as a surprise, it was not a complete shock. However, there is only so much the city can control at the event.

"No, they tell you they're coming," said the mayor. "It's not really, 'Do you want us?'"

No matter how last minute it is, supporters are excited to see the president back in Rochester.

"I don't care what president it is, it's exciting to have a president come to your town," said Trump supporter Marthamae Kottschade.

Is the President's visit cause for excitement or concern?

"Both," Norton said. "In a normal year, having candidates and their surrogates come to your community is considered a coup and something you look forward to."

Yet with Minnesota and surrounding states seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases, there is also worry among local leaders.

"We are asking the Trump campaign to abide by the state guidelines which is 250 people requiring masks and six foot distancing," Norton said.

The big question: will it be enforced?

"Making sure that happens, as other communities have found, has been problematic," admits Norton.

Previous Trump rallies in the state have been linked to an increased COVID-19 spread for those surrounding communities.

Some supporters will attend despite the risk.

"I want to call it a concert! I'm still wearing the wristband from when I got to see him in Duluth a couple weeks ago. It's so exciting," Kottschade said. "We're all Americans. We bleed red, white and blue."

Kottschade has been attending Trump events all over. She attended one at the White House earlier this fall and one in Wisconsin this week. On Friday, she will have her family with her.

"Friday, I will be front row with my son who is a Marine, my son-in law that's a deputy and my new little granddaughters," Kottsschade said. "This is what it's about!"

Mayor Norton says anyone who attends Friday's rally should follow health guidelines and advises elderly and at risk populations to skip it all together.

"There will be a lot of strangers coming to our community. We don't know what their communities are like," Norton said. "We don't want you exposed to an illness and get sick or die from it. Use every caution. There will be plenty of coverage on television so you can watch it there."

Doors open for the event at 2 p.m. According to a campaign spokesperson, Trump is scheduled to arrive at Rochester International Airport around 4 in the afternoon.

Alex Tejada

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