Karl Rove says coronavirus pandemic may end era of political conventions as 'big extravaganzas'

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Fox News contributor and former George W. Bush senior adviser Karl Rove told "The Daily Briefing" Thursday that the coronavirus pandemic will have a lasting impact on how national political conventions are organized.

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"We will have conventions because you’ve got to get together and nominate a candidate, write a platform, review the party rules," Rove told host Dana Perino. "But these big extravaganzas of four days of convention activity with dozens of speakers preceded by weeks of meetings of the platform committee -- 50,000 people were in Cleveland for the Republican convention [in 2016], over 50,000 were in Philadelphia for the Democratic convention -- it's going to be hard in the age of coronavirus to do that.

"How do you put 20,000 people in an arena and engage in proper social distancing if that’s necessary?" he asked rhetorically. "How do you test people?"

Rove also raised the possibility that an opposition party activist could intentionally try to infect convention-goers before noting that the gatherings "may have gotten long in the tooth because the viewership has been dropping, the amount of hours devoted to them have been cut back, so they’ve got to change."

Host Dana Perino also asked Rove about new Fox News polling showing former Vice President Joe Biden leading President Trump in the battleground states of Pennsylvania and Michigan.

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Rove said that Trump's team knows they must win two of Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin and hold the other states Trump took in 2016 in order to defeat Biden.

Prior to 2016, Michigan and Pennsylvania had not backed a Republican presidential candidate since George H.W. Bush in 1988, while Wisconsin had not gone to the GOP since Ronald Reagan in 1984.