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What you need to know about the 2020 elections across the greater Tampa Bay region.

Both Presidential Candidates In Tampa Thursday: Trump At Ray Jay, Biden Visits Fairgrounds

Crowd at the Trump rally in Tampa
Stephanie Colombini/WUSF Public Media
A large crowd gathers for President Donald Trump's rally at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa on Oct. 29, 2020.

In what may be considered a preemptive strike, President Trump will hold a rally in Tampa on the same day that Democratic candidate Joe Biden had announced he's coming to Tampa, as well.

Both presidential candidates are doubling down on the country's largest swing state as President Donald Trump will hold another Florida rally in Tampa on Thursday.

Democratic nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden's campaign will be in Tampa on Thursday night. The 6:30 p.m. event will be at the Florida State Fairgrounds.

The Trump campaign announced its event will be held in the north parking lot of Raymond James Stadium. Doors open at 10:30 a.m. with the rally beginning at 1:30 p.m.

That event also happens to be the location of an early voting site in Hillsborough County. The Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections office issued a statement saying it has no affiliation with the campaign event.

Florida law bars candidates from campaigning within 150 feet of a voting site, but the elections office says it can't prohibit events outside of that "no solicitation zone."

Early voting inside Raymond James Stadium will still be open - from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. But the county says access to the voting site could be difficult as Trump supporters are being let in hours ahead of the rally.

The City of Tampa announced on Wednesday afternoon that N Himes Ave. will be closed between W Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd. and W Tampa Bay Blvd. beginning at 1 p.m. due to the event. It is scheduled to reopen at 3:00 p.m.

The city is urging drivers to consider alternate routes and use caution when driving in the area, and said modifications to the road closure may be necessary during the visit.

Elections officials remind voters there are 25 other Early Voting Sites in Hillsborough to choose from.

The president's trip to Tampa comes after a rally Wednesday in another key state, Arizona.

Florida is considered a must-win for Trump, with its 29 electoral college votes.

Steve Newborn is a WUSF reporter and producer at WUSF covering environmental issues and politics in the Tampa Bay area.
I cover health care for WUSF and the statewide journalism collaborative Health News Florida. I’m passionate about highlighting community efforts to improve the quality of care in our state and make it more accessible to all Floridians. I’m also committed to holding those in power accountable when they fail to prioritize the health needs of the people they serve.