Hillary Clinton Cancels Cleveland Rally, Sparking Low Attendance Rumors

Hillary Clinton canceled one of her first post-nomination rallies in Cleveland, leading to rumors about low interest in the events.

Published Aug 2, 2016

Image Via Instagram

On 29 July 2016, Cleveland-area news sources reported that Hillary Clinton had added campaign stops in that city as some of her first public appearances following the Democratic National Convention (DNC):

On the heels of her official nomination as the Democratic presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton added a Cleveland stop to her barnstorming bus tour through two key swing states.

She will stop at noon at A Piece Of Cleveland, a local business that turns reclaimed wood into custom furniture. The event is not open to the general public. It is sandwiched in between two previously announced rallies in Youngstown and Columbus.

Clinton and her running mate, U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia, will appear at four events in Pennsylvania before ending with a 7:45 p.m. rally at Youngstown's East High School.

Within one day of the announcement, multiple sources reported that Clinton and Kaine's Cleveland appearances had been canceled due to scheduling concerns:

The Democratic presidential nominee and her running mate, Sen. Tim Kaine, were scheduled to appear together at a furniture maker establishment as part of their weekend bus tour across Pennsylvania and Ohio.

According to Fox 8 Cleveland, the campaign said the event was canceled due to time constraints.

On social media, rumors circulated holding that the events were canceled due to anticipated low attendance or a distressingly small number of returned RSVPs:

Adding to the confusion were 31 July 2016 reports that Clinton did in fact appear in Cleveland, inexplicably canceling the planned campaign rally to attend an impromptu church gathering:

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, along with her running mate Tim Kaine made a stop in Cleveland as part of their "Stronger Together" jobs-focused bus tour through Pennsylvania and Ohio.

Clinton spoke at Imani Temple Ministry in Cleveland.

Clinton’s campaign originally told Fox 8 that the event was canceled due to time constraints. It appears that the campaign decided to hold an impromptu event anyway, after spending the night in Cleveland at the Kimpton Schofield Hotel.

Rumors of low attendance circulated about that alternate event as well. However, Clinton's church stop in Cleveland was purportedly spontaneous and unpromoted, making it unlikely to garner much attendance:

The tweeted photograph of that event was part of a set published to Twitter by NBC News anchor Andrea Mitchell, who did not indicate attendance at the unplanned rally was considered to be unexpectedly low:

Cleveland city councilman Jeff Johnson shared additional images of the church event, asserting that the crowd was larger than initial photographs suggested:

Johnson also reported that close to 300 churchgoers were in attendance:

One day prior, Mitchell shared two photographs from separate rallies in Ohio and Pennsylvania that did not appear to be sparsely attended:

The Clinton campaign had originally scheduled an appearance in Cleveland on 31 July 2016 for a noontime event at a furniture store, but citing time constraints they canceled the event. However, Clinton and Kaine visited a church there in an impromptu appearance and did not skip visiting Cleveland entirely. One possible explanation is that the church appearance occurred earlier in the day than the originally scheduled (and later canceled) rally, allowing the candidates time to travel to others scheduled stops later in the day.

Kim LaCapria is a former writer for Snopes.

Article Tags

a Member

Your membership is the foundation of our sustainability and resilience.


Ad-Free Browsing on
Members-Only Newsletter
Cancel Anytime