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Attendees at Trump rally in North Carolina test positive

RALEIGH — Two people who attended President Donald Trump’s rally last week in Gastonia, North Carolina, have tested positive for the coronavirus.

The Gaston County Department of Health and Human Services made the announcement on Thursday.

“These cases are not thought to be an indication of spread from the rally at this time, but rather two independent cases among individuals who were in attendance,” the health department said in a statement.

The department recommends anyone who attended the president’s Oct. 21 rally assess their own risk, monitor for symptoms and get tested, if necessary. The department says it contacted other locations the two individuals attended and is notifying close contacts.

The news comes days before the Nov. 3 presidential election. North Carolina is a key battleground Trump needs to win to boost his prospects of re-election.

Trump’s reelection campaign, however, said it’s postponing a Thursday night rally in Fayetteville, North Carolina, for a few days as Tropical Storm Zeta bears down on the Northeast.

The president’s campaign said in a statement that the outdoor rally has been postponed until Monday because of a wind advisory that has gusts reaching 50 mph.

Several North Carolina counties were under tropical storm watch Thursday afternoon. North Carolina is a battleground state that Trump won in 2016 but that Democrat Joe Biden is pushing for in 2020.

Trump held a rally on Thursday in Tampa, Florida.