DODGE CENTER, Minn. - Dodge Center residents are sharing their reactions after the Trump Campaign moved the President's Friday rally back to Rochester.
Many were expecting to see the Commander in Chief in their town of roughly 2,700 people, which organizers say may have drawn thousands of visitors. Multiple businesses said they were planning to close for the day, or serve rallygoers before and after the event.
But as news spread of the relocation of the rally, residents expressed disappointment with state officials, who they viewed as responsible for the move. KIMT spoke with one business owner, who says hundreds of jobs have recently been lost in Dodge Center, and a presidential visit may have helped stem the tide.
"I just want to be able to have our people to come and listen to our President talk," said JJ Francis, President of SOMINN Machinery Sales. "We know we're in a delema because of COVID, we're working with it, it's very hard on everybody's businesses. All small businesses, and restaurants, I feel really bad for those guys. And we're just, we're hurting, we want to get things moving."
The Office of Governor Walz issued a statement to KIMT yesterday afternoon, stating "The Governor's Office has not been in communication with the Trump campaign today. But of course, an event of that nature would have been out of compliance with state health guidance starting on June, 5th of this year."
The Trump Campaign is now calling Friday's event a MAGA Peaceful Protest, which will limit capacity at 250 people.