Donald Trump hijacks Rick Raccane endorsement to preview 2020 campaign
By Daniel J. McLaughlin
Donald Trump is very eager to return to the campaign trail, even though he has another three years left in his first term.
The president couldn't wait to get his 2020 campaign underway. On the day he moved into the White House, Trump filed his re-election paperwork.
With just under 1000 days left until American voters elect their next president, he has hired his campaign manager, Brad Parscale. And just 20 months in office, he has predicted that he will achieve the goal set in his last campaign - Make America Great Again - with his 2020 campaign slogan: Keep America Great!
The president was in western Pennsylvania, the heart of America's steel industry, to support Rep. Rick Raccane, the Republican candidate in the special congressional election. Upon entering the stage he immediately endorsed Saccone, and then turned the event to a pro-Trump rally.
It was the Trump
greatest lowest hits. He fell back into his comfort zone by attacking his opponents - calling NBC host Chuck Todd "sleepy eyes" and a "sleeping son of a bitch", as well as describing Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters as a "very low IQ individual". He also referred to Raccane's Democratic rival as "Lamb the sham", arguing that Conor Lamb would vote the party line and doesn't care about Pennsylvanians. He launched into his usual long and rambling diatribes about policy and people who have crossed the president. He was anything but presidential, even mocking the concept by saying: "If I came like a stiff, you guys wouldn't come here tonight."
According to CNN, who spoke to a White House official familiar with the speech, delivered "about five minutes" of what had been scripted for Saturday night's rally. He riffed on themes such as the death penalty for drug dealers and the Winter Olympics, claiming credit for their success - "It's a little hard to sell tickets when you think you're going to be nuked."
And more importantly, in the 75-minute, bladder-busting rant, he offered a preview of Trump 2020. "Our new slogan, when we start running, in - can you believe it, two years from now - is going to be, Keep America Great, exclamation point," he told the crowd gathered near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, "But we can only do that if we elect people who are going to back our agenda and fight for our values."
He looked back to go forwards, rehashing the 2016 presidential election. Trump claimed that he surprised people with the support he received from women "We got 52 percent," he said, "Right? Fifty-two."
Wrong. The Washington Post refutes this claim, saying it is "clearly incorrect". They explain: "Because we know that Trump 1) received more support from men than women and 2) lost the popular vote. So if he's received majorities of men and women, it would have been awfully hard for him to get a minority of ballots cast."
The exit polls show that he only received 41 per cent of the vote from women - he got 52 per cent from men. He would be correct, however, if he specified what kind of woman voted for him - he earned 52 per cent from white women. Among Hispanic women, he won only a quarter of the vote, and with black women, it was an abysmal four per cent.
There is plenty of time for Trump to try and claim the women's vote. He also needs to claim the overall vote with a Politico/Morning Consult poll showing he is trailing behind. And to make things worse he is trailing by eight points behind a generic Democrat. The poll showed that Trump is currently receiving 36 per cent of support, compared to 44 per cent for a yet-to-be-named Democrat candidate. The president can try to win the votes of Democrats - or attempt to woo the 19 per cent of voters who remain undecided.
The Trump 2020 campaign started as soon as he entered the White House, but Donald Trump is vying to get it going in earnest.