Trump plans rally in North Carolina on same day as Mueller testimony

President Trump will hold a 2020 campaign rally in North Carolina on July 17 – the same day former special counsel Robert Mueller is scheduled to appear before Congress.

The president’s re-election campaign said it will host a “Keep America Great” rally at Williams Arena in Greenville that day.

The timing of the rally is likely planned to coincide with the Mueller’s appearance before the House Judiciary and Intelligence committees, with Democrats hoping for explosive testimony that will damage Trump.

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Trump’s critics also hope the testimony will generate attention to the Mueller report that he provided to the Justice Department in March, at the conclusion of his Russia investigation.

The report looked at Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election but found no evidence that Trump colluded with the foreign government in an effort to get elected.

The special counsel did detail instances of possible obstruction of justice by Trump, a section of the report that some Democrats jumped on to suggest launching the impeachment proceedings against the president.

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The North Carolina rally is also particularly important with 2020 coming. Not only did Trump win the state by less than four points back in 2016, but Democrats are eyeing the U.S. Senate seat of Republican incumbent Thom Tillis.

Trump recently endorsed Tillis against his GOP challenger, despite Tillis' being criticized from the right for opposing Trump's declaration of a national emergency at the U.S.-Mexico border.

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“Senator Thom Tillis of North Carolina has really stepped up to the plate,” Trump wrote in a tweet. “Thom is tough on Crime, Strong on the Border and fights hard against Illegal Immigration. He loves our Military, our Vets and our great Second Amendment. I give Thom my Full and Total Endorsement!”

Tillis penned an op-ed last week, arguing that Congress should compel cities and local authorities to cooperate with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

“Congress also has a duty to stop the growing trend of sanctuary jurisdictions, which is why I plan next month to take action at the federal level by introducing the Justice for Victims of Sanctuary Cities Act,” he wrote.

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“It has long been assumed that local law enforcement would at least make a good-faith effort to help fulfill lawful requests made by federal law enforcement. However, given the recent embrace of irresponsible sanctuary policies over public safety, the time for action – and accountability – is now,” he added.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.