Campaign manager Brad Parscale tweeted a press release Monday that accused Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey of charging the Target Center Minneapolis $530,000 in security fees with the intention of stopping the rally scheduled for Thursday.
“The radical leftist mayor of Minneapolis, Jacob Frey, is abusing the power of his office and attempting to extort President Trump’s re-election campaign by conjuring a phony and outlandish bill for security in an effort to block a scheduled Keep America Great rally,” the release states.
This is an outrageous abuse of power by a liberal mayor trying to deny the rights of his own city’s residents just because he hates the President!
— Brad Parscale (@parscale) October 8, 2019
The Target Center is owned by the city of Minneapolis but run by a private company, AEG Worldwide. Trump’s campaign is threatening legal action as early as Tuesday morning if officials block the rally without payment of security fees.
The campaign replied in a letter attached to the press release saying security falls exclusively under the U.S. Secret Service’s purview and if the Target Center withheld the arena, the campaign would view the action as a breach of contract.
“We are well aware of Mayor Frey’s vocal partisan opposition to President Trump and calls to disrupt the rally,” the letter from Trump law firm Jones Day addressed to the Target Center’s management firm said. “This last-minute squeeze seems to be nothing but a pretextual political effort with serious First Amendment ramifications.”
The campaign is requesting the management firm for the Target Center confirm the availability of the arena for the rally by 11 a.m. central time on Tuesday, or it will prepare to take the issue to court.
Frey’s office could not be immediately reached for comment. In a statement after Trump’s rally was announced, Frey said he couldn’t legally block the president from coming but his “message of hatred will never be welcome in Minneapolis.”
Trump’s rally is expected to draw huge crowds on Thursday, both inside the arena as well as protesters outside. City officials have been mum publicly about the anticipated security costs.
AEG did not immediately respond to request for comment.
The campaign often does not reimburse local governments for costs associated with his rallies.