Trump campaign threatens suit over Target Center security concerns

Frey says they expect the bill to be paid, according arena operator contract

WCCO Radio Newsroom
October 08, 2019 - 12:08 pm

Getty Images / rasilja


The Trump reelection campaign is threatening to sue the company that runs the Target Center, after an up-front payment of $540,000 dollars was reportedly requested to cover the security costs of Thrusday's planned rally there.  

The city of Minneapolis owns the arena, but it's run by AEG Worldwide.  

In a statement late Monday, the Trump's campaign teama accused Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey of abusing the power of his office by creating a "phony and outlandish bill" to pay for additional security.

Frey said they want the money up front because the Trump campaign has apparently failed to reimburse other cities for costs incurred for hosting rallies.  

"It's not extortion to expect someone to pay their bills, even when they really don't want to pay their bills," said Frey during a Tuesday afternoon news conference at city hall, pointing out that it's up to AEG to settle any differences with any groups that contract out the arena. 

"This is not a political decision, this is a decision to abide by the contract that we already have with AEG," he said.

This comes after Frey and Trump engaged in a Twitter war on Tuesday morning over the new Minneapolis city policy banning off-duty police officers from wearing their uniforms while attending political events.

"I wake up every single morning with not a lot of time on my hands because I'm doing things like filling potholes and making sure our city has enough affordable housing and I don't have time with a city of 430,000 people to be tweeting garbage out," he said.

"It's kind of surprising when the president of the United States, a country with 327 million people, has the time to do this himself." 

Minneapolis police chief Madeiria Arradondo released a statement about the presidential visit:

When our Nation’s President arrives in our city this Thursday, the men and women of the Minneapolis Police Department along with our local, county, state and federal law enforcement partners will be focused on our primary responsibility to ensure the public safety of ALL who will participate in practicing their first amendment rights which include Freedom of Speech, Freedom of the Press, and Peaceable Assembly.

The MPD will administrate a comprehensive, operational public safety plan which includes a highly visible and robust police presence in and around Target Center on Thursday.

Because we expect larger than normal crowds for this Thursday’s events, both vehicular and pedestrian traffic will be significantly reduced around the Target Center in order to increase the public safety for all.  These areas will be clearly marked.  I am strongly urging all those who attend not to bring items such as:

  • Back Packs
  • Strollers
  • Firearms, knives, weapons, sharp objects, shields, or fireworks
  • Popup tents or canopies
  • Cans, glass containers, pre-mixed beverages, or alcoholic beverages
  • Wagons or pull carts
  • Coolers
  • Drones
  • Pets (excluding certified service animals)
  • Grills, propane tanks, or open flames
  • Bicycles
  • Flag poles, bats, clubs, sticks (including signs attached to sticks)
  • Any athletic equipment or other item that could be used as a weapon

As peace officers everyone’s safety and security is of our utmost importance.  The Minneapolis Police Department intends to provide a safe and peaceful opportunity for people to exercise their Constitutional rights.  As such, I must emphasize that criminal conduct by anyone, including property damage, will not be tolerated.  Those individuals choosing to engage in such illegal behavior will be arrested and we will work with our criminal justice agencies to ensure they are properly charged to the full extent of the law.

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