A Whatcom County fairgrounds near the Canadian border was not the Donald Trump campaign’s first choice for a rally Saturday in Western Washington.

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A Whatcom County fairgrounds near the Canadian border was not the Donald Trump campaign’s first choice for a rally Saturday in Western Washington.

Trump had looked at holding the rally at Seattle’s Boeing Field, said state Sen. Doug Ericksen, R-Ferndale, who is working for the Trump campaign in the state.

But Ericksen said he was unable to get permission. “We had it all lined up, and King County refused to issue the permit,” he said.

A county spokesman said there was no unfair treatment of the Trump campaign.

Frank Abe, a spokesman for the King County transportation department, said Ericksen had been talking with a private tenant at the airport.

Abe said the tenant was reminded that a detailed security and parking plan was required for nonaviation uses of the airport. Such a plan was never submitted to airport officials.

“No request was made by the tenant,” he said.

Airport director Randall Berg said the county’s actions were “absolutely not” politically motivated. He added that the tenant, whom he said did not want to be identified, had agreed to hold a Trump rally in a hangar.

But Berg said a rally with 5,000 people was unprecedented on the east side of the airfield and would have been a big logistical problem — even before considering possible protests outside.

He said the tenant ultimately agreed and did not formally seek a permit.

Ericksen said he also explored Paine Field in Everett but was unable to agree on terms there.

A contract to use the Northwest Washington Fair and Event Center in Lynden, Whatcom County, was finalized Thursday night.

He added: “Lynden is nicer than Seattle.”