• Coronavirus cases in the Milwaukee area are up 6.5% from last week, with 148 new cases since Tuesday
  • Convention organizers said the entire convention will be virtual, canceling plans for other speakers to travel to Milwaukee as well
  • Trump recently conceded he would be unable to deliver his acceptance speech before thousands of convention-goers

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden will not travel to Milwaukee to give his acceptance speech and instead accept the nomination from his home in Delaware because of the coronavirus pandemic, Democratic National Convention organizers announced Wednesday.

The decision came as President Trump said he is considering delivering his acceptance speech from the White House.

The Aug. 17-20 convention will be entirely virtual.

“After ongoing consultation with public health officials and experts — who underscored the worsening coronavirus pandemic — the Democratic National Convention Committee announced today speakers for the 2020 Democratic National Convention will no longer travel to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in order to prevent risking the health of our host community as well as the convention’s production teams, security officials, community partners, media and others necessary to orchestrate the event,” organizers said in a statement.

Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez said the party puts the health and safety of the American people first and listened to experts in making its decision.

The announcement came amid a recent increase in coronavirus cases in Wisconsin elsewhere in the Midwest. Milwaukee’s case count is up 6.5% from last week and deaths are up 4.1%, reported. In the last 24 hours, the county reported 148 new cases. Nearby Chicago has placed the state on a quarantine list. Anyone traveling from Wisconsin to Chicago is required to quarantine for two weeks.

Convention organizers had envisioned 50,000 people traveling to the area for the event.

“While we wish we could move forward with welcoming the world to beautiful Milwaukee in two weeks, we recognize protecting the health of our host community and everyone involved with this convention must be paramount,” convention CEO Joe Solmonese said in a statement.

Biden has been trying to run his campaign mostly from a television studio set up in his basement since the coronavirus pandemic upended the primary campaign season. He has made few in-person forays.

President Trump has regularly ridiculed Biden’s campaign strategy and only recently conceded Republicans would have to cancel plans for a full convention, Aug. 24-27, after initially balking at guidelines that would have required social distancing and a reduction in the number of people who could attend.

The Republican convention had been scheduled for Charlotte, North Carolina, before Trump insisted his acceptance speech be moved to Jacksonville, Florida. A sharp spike coronavirus cases in Florida, however, forced the president to scrap that plan. Trump said Wednesday on Fox News he would accept the nomination at the White House.

“We're thinking about it," Trump said when asked about the possibility. "It would be the easiest from the standpoint of security.”