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Pence to campaign in Tucson on Friday

Vice President Mike Pence will make a campaign stop in Tucson on Friday, speaking at the airport as the Trump reelection effort continues to work to bolster support in what could be a key state in the presidential race.

Pence, who campaigned here in August after canceling a June visit over concerns about the spike in COVID-19 cases in Arizona, will also speak at the Flagstaff airport earlier in the day.

The Republican VP, whose staff has recently seen at least five cases of coronavirus, will appear at a 2:30 p.m. rally at Tucson International Airport. Attendees are asked to provide their name, email and phone number to the Trump campaign, and agree to not sue the campaign or Republican National Committee if they contract coronavirus at the event.

Last week, Trump spoke to several thousand supporters at the airport, with many not wearing masks and crowding closely together at the outdoor rally. Local health officials said they are "concerned about all events where people do not wear masks and/or do not physically distance," citing the potential for the spread of the infectious disease.

Pence is scheduled to speak at the same facility, the Tucson Jet Center, 6720 S. Plumer Ave., which services private planes flying out of the airport.

Democratic vice presidential candidate Kamala Harris made a quick stop in Tucson on Wednesday, speaking to an invite-only group of supporters at a "drive-in voter mobilization event" held at the West Campus of Pima Community College. Local press were not invited to cover the event.

Meanwhile, President Donald Trump was making a seventh campaign swing in Arizona, visiting Bullhead City, near Nevada line, to capture coverage from Las Vegas media market while avoiding that state's COVID-19 restrictions on gatherings. He was also campaigning in the Phoenix suburb of Glendale as he seeks to bolster support in Arizona.

Trump continues to trail Democratic candidate Joe Biden in Arizona polls, but remains within the margin of error in what traditionally has been a Republican state.

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During his speech here last week, Trump called Biden corrupt, referred to Sen. Martha McSally as "honey" and "darling" and touted border wall construction in Arizona.

The Pima County Health Department "encourages people to wear face masks and practice physical distancing any time they leave their house, remember to wash hands frequently or carry and use hand sanitizer, and to stay home if they feel sick," said Dr. Theresa Cullen, PCHD's director. "We know these are the best ways to slow the spread of the virus. We are concerned about all events where people do not wear masks and/or do not physically distance. These are the situations that allow for the greatest potential of COVID-19 spread."

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Paul Ingram/TucsonSentinel.com

Vice President Mike Pence speaks to supporters during a 'Cops for Trump' event at the Westin La Paloma in August.