- President Donald Trump hosted his first rally since the start of the impeachment inquiry in Minneapolis on Thursday, spending a sizable portion of the nearly two-hour rally diminishing the inquiry and attacking political opponents.
- The president’s son Eric Trump opened the event and rallied a cry of “Lock him up,” in reference to Biden and his son, Hunter Biden. Pence also reiterated the president’s promise to “drain the swamp.”
- He subsequently spent the rest of his speech by lashing out at political opponents, insulting the media, and also saying he wants someone to call him “Donald” instead of “Mr. President.”
- Here are 10 of the wildest moments during Trump’s Thursday night rally in Minnesota.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
“Donald” had quite a night.
President Donald Trump hosted his first rally since the start of the impeachment inquiry in Minneapolis on Thursday. He spent the 102-minute speech lashing out at political opponents, insulting the media, and admitting that he yearns for someone to call him “Donald” instead of “Mr. President.” (The crowd obliged him with a chant of “Donald,” in response.)
The president’s son, Eric Trump, opened the event, with a rallying a cry of “Lock him up,” in reference to Biden and his son, Hunter Biden, an homage to chants against 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. Eric Trump continued after the chant to say that he doesn’t want to lock up Biden, instead “we’re just gonna beat the hell out of all of them,” referring to the Democratic candidate pool in the 2020 election.
Outside the arena, anti-Trump protesters chanted “Lock him up” in reference to Trump’s impeachment inquiry.
— bengarvin (@bengarvin) October 10, 2019
After Eric Trump spoke, Vice President Mike Pence took to the stage to comment on their time in office – calling it “three years of action – as well as discussing health care for veterans. Pence also made a reference to “drain the swamp,” the popular refrain that the president also returned to Thursday.
Trump began his portion of the rally by claiming that he had set a “record” attendance, a usual occurance at many of his rallies. A fire department official said the capacity at Target Centre was 20,000, MPR News reported.
Here are 10 of the wildest moments of Trump’s first post-impeachment inquiry rally.
Dredging up an affair between 2 former FBI officials and imitating cries of passion
Trump mocked former FBI officials Lisa Page and Peter Strzok, who were involved in the investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, dramatically imitating their romantic affair with cries of, “I love you!”
When the president brought them up, the crowd erupted in boos, and many laughed at his rendition of their text messages.
Saying “everybody” thought his call with the Ukrainian president was “perfect”
Trump bragged that “everybody looked at” his phone call with Ukrainian president Zelensky and deemed it “perfect.”
It’s unclear who he was referring to.
Multiple Repulibcan lawmakers have criticised the call as improper. Democrats launched an impeachment inquiry over the incident, on the basis that Trump was pressuring the Ukrainian government to investigate his political rival, and possibly using military aid as a bargaining chip, which many believe amounted to asking a foreign country to inferfere in US elections.
Going in on the Bidens
The president then went on to insult Hunter Biden and his business tactics, calling him a “loser” and saying his father Joe Biden “was never considered smart.”
Trump also said Biden was only good as vice president because he “understood how to kiss Barack Obama’s arse.”
Biden, the Democratic presidential frontrunner, called for Trump’s impeachment for the first time on Wednesday.
On Trump’s call with the Ukrainian president in July, he repeatedly pressed Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate Biden and his son, alleging corruption because Hunter Biden was on the board of an energy company there.
Saying parents of fallen soldiers “scream and cry”
Repeating a story he told earlier in the week about meeting parents of fallen soldiers at Dover Air Force Base, Trump said parents would seem “absolutely fine” but “scream and cry” like you’ve never heard before when they saw the coffin.
The president was telling the story as an example of why “endless wars” need to stop. He pulled US forces out of northeastern Syria this week, allowing Turkey to launch an assault against the Kurds, who are American allies.
Suggesting House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is lying and “stupid”
“She’s either got one of two problems,” he said. “She’s either really stupid, or she’s really lost it, or maybe there’s a certain dishonesty in there someplace.”
Pelosi has been the lynchpin in the impeachment inquiry. She has said Trump is “almost not worth” impeaching but the constitution is worth defending.
Insulting Minneapolis politicians
Trump then took a swing at Rep. Ilhan Omar, who represents Minnesota’s 5th Congressional District. He also insulted the mayor of Minneapolis, Jacob Frey, who displayed his opposition of the rally earlier Thursday.
“How do you have such a person representing you in Minnesota?”Trump asked the crowd. “I’m very angry at you people right now.”
Omar later responded to Trump’s comments on Twitter.
“At his rally just now, Trump called me an ‘America-hating socialist’ and a ‘disgrace.’ He shouted xenophobic conspiracy theories about me. He scolded my district for voting for me,” Omar wrote. “His hate is no match for our movement.”
Bemoaning the number of Somali refugees in Minnesota
In a lengthy rant, Trump criticised the Minnesota government for the large number of Somali refugees in the state. Omar is a Somali refugee and became naturalized US citizen in her late teens.
The president said he would reduce refugee resettlement by 85%,CNN reported.
“I promised you that as president I would give local communities a greater say in refugee policy and put in place enhanced vetting and responsible immigration control. And I’ve done that,”Trump said. “We are keeping terrorists, criminals, and extremists the hell out of our country.”
Minnesota politicians, including Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, hit back at Trump’s comments.
“Immigrants and refugees have helped make our state a wonderful place to live and work – which is far more than this President has done,” Klobuchar tweeted. “Stop using immigrants and refugees as political pawns!”
Complaining no one calls him “Donald” anymore
Trump told supporters he was sad nobody calls him “Donald” anymore, just “Mr. President,” so the audience chanted his name back at him, according to CNN reporter Daniel Dale.
Praising the My Pillow guy
Trump made repeated references to Minnesota native Michael J. Lindell and his company, My Pillow.
The pillow entrepreneur has been a major donor to the Trump campaign.
My Pillow runs many of its ads on Fox News.
Saying the US is “the toughest nation to deal with”
When recounted that when asked what the toughest country to deal with was, Trump responded that it was the US.
“I said you’re not gonna believe this: it’s – the USA is the toughest nation to deal with! The USA. It’s true. Because we’re dealing with some very sick and deranged people.”
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