Oklahoma’s Supreme Court has ruled that President Donald Trump’s rally on Saturday in Tulsa, his first since March, can go ahead.
A lawsuit to stop the 20 June rally over concerns that it could increase the spread of Covid-19 in the community was filed this week.
Virus cases are rising in Oklahoma, and local health officials have expressed concerns over hosting the rally.
The Trump campaign says they received over 1m ticket requests for the event.
The queue for the event at the Bank of Oklahoma Center – which holds up to 20,000 people – began forming earlier this week.
The lawsuit was filed on behalf of local residents and businesses who had argued the venue should mandate social distancing guidelines in accordance with US public health officials’ recommendations, or cancel the event.
But the Supreme Court said that as the state had begun to reopen, the regulations left social distancing decisions up to individual business owners.
Tulsa’s mayor imposed a curfew on Thursday around the venue, declaring a civil emergency, but the president says the city leader has assured him the measure will not apply to the rally itself.
Mayor GT Bynum, a Republican, cited recent “civil unrest” and potential opposition protests as he slapped an exclusion zone on a six-block radius near the arena.
On Friday morning, President Trump posted a warning on Twitter to demonstrators.
“Any protesters, anarchists, agitators, looters or lowlifes who are going to Oklahoma please understand, you will not be treated like you have been in New York, Seattle, or Minneapolis,” the president tweeted.
“It will be a much different scene!”