Trump Tulsa rally a dud but Berman and Bolton bring fireworks – live

…and welcome to another day of coverage of US politics, protests, the coronavirus outbreak and anything in between.

So Donald Trump’s rally in Tulsa was … not the huge event its host promised. The campaign got punked by a Pete Buttigieg organiser and a bunch of kids on TikTok (me neither but that’s what it says here), lots of people obtaining tickets but not showing up.

The president promised a million or more fans would attend. An outside stage was built for overflow from the BOK Center. It wasn’t needed. Nor did many protesters turn up, as the president and his supporters (some of whom spoke to Oliver Laughland) seemed to hope they would.

Onstage, the president proved he could drink a glass of water with one hand and re-enacted his walk down a West Point ramp – at length. David Smith’s report is here, and Richard Wolffe’s op-ed-evisceration is here:

Of course, there were things in Trump’s speech to take seriously: he spoke in racist terms about the coronavirus and said testing for Covid-19 was a “double-edged sword”, because it led to the identification of more cases. No, really.

The US had now tested 25m people, far more than other countries, Trump said, adding: “When you do testing to that extent, you’re gonna find more people, you’re gonna find more cases. So I said to my people slow the testing down.” No, really.

Trump calls coronavirus ‘kung flu’ and says he slowed testing – video

The US has recorded 2.25m cases of Covid-19 and nearly 120,000 deaths. In many Republican-led states which are trying to reopen, Oklahoma among them, cases are spiking. Six Trump staffers who set up the rally tested positive. No, really.

There is of course much more going on around the US. In New York, the US attorney for the southern district, Geoffrey Berman, agreed to step down after a near-24 hour standoff with Attorney General William Barr. Only Trump has the authority to fire Berman, but he said he didn’t. Then he said he did, sort of. The SDNY has investigated and prosecuted, and continues to investigate and prosecute, close Trump allies.

There is also John Bolton’s book, of course. On Saturday, a judge declined to block it, but also slammed the former national security adviser for his attitude to national security. Trump tried to claim a win, and hinted strongly that the government would go after Bolton’s earnings from his book. The Room Where Is Happened is out Tuesday, anyway, the Guardian review is in. Lloyd Green calls it “the best opposition reach dump ever”.

All this and continuing protests around the US, against police brutality and racism in the wake of the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Rayshard Brooks and other African Americans. More to come.

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