Some guests for Saturday’s White House event on the South Lawn, which will be President Donald Trump’s first since testing positive for the coronavirus, had their travel and lodging paid for by controversial conservative activist Candace Owens’ group BLEXIT, according to emails obtained by ABC News.
Supporters, who are also scheduled to attend a separate BLEXIT event earlier in the day, were invited to attend a “HUGE outdoor rally” by the group and asked to fill out a form that notified them that BLEXIT, a campaign urging Black Americans to leave the Democratic Party, will be covering travel costs.
Guests were later informed they would be receiving an invitation from the White House to attend an event with Trump.
In an email from Owens, obtained by ABC News, attendees were told “EVERYONE MUST BRING A MASK TO BE ALLOWED ENTRY ONTO THE WHITE HOUSE GROUNDS.” and that “absolutely no exceptions” will be made.
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Still, wearing a face mask will not be required. Attendees will have to submit to a COVID-19 screening the morning of the event, which will consist of a temperature check and a brief questionnaire.
Guests will first attend a “BLEXIT Back the Blue event” on the Ellipse between the White House and the Washington Monument before heading over to the South Lawn for the president’s remarks, according to a schedule obtained by ABC News.
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When reached for comment, Owens told ABC News, “We are not interested in participating in your obvious media angle here to slander/attack the President regarding Covid-19.” She added that Saturday’s event “is about supporting law enforcement in minority communities.” It is not immediately clear how many of those set to attend the event had their travel costs covered.
White House spokesman Judd Deere told ABC News the White House “is not involved in covering any cost.”
Following Trump’s remarks, the BLEXIT group is also planning a demonstration at Black Lives Matter Plaza showing “support for law enforcement,” according to the schedule.
The White House plans to host an event on Saturday featuring Trump with hundreds of supporters and guests from Owens’ group on the South Lawn discussing “law and order,” ABC News previously reported.
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“All attendees must bring a mask