Sen. Elizabeth Warren holds a town hall
President Trump marked Monday’s Democratic National Convention opening with a broadside against his rivals, as he accused former Vice President Joe Biden of staying “in his basement” and called running mate Sen. Kamala Harris “vicious” at the start of a whirlwind swing through the Midwest.
The president kicked off a week of travel for him through key battleground states with a stop in Minnesota, where lambasted the presumptive Democratic nominee as a “puppet” of the Democratic Party’s progressive win and criticized Harris’ past debate stage attacks on Biden.
In one of several public appearances in Minnesota, Trump hit Harris, D-Calif., saying that she “went down like a rock in water” during the Democratic primaries and “left town before the first vote was taken.”
“There was no one that was meaner and said more horrible things about Biden than her,” Trump said, referring to bad blood between Biden and Harris early during the primaries.
Trump called her “nastier, meaner and more vicious” than “Pocahontas,” referring to Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.
The president went on to slam Biden and the media, claiming the press is not fairly questioning the former vice president.
“Joe is in his basement,” Trump said. “He doesn’t come out. No one asks him questions.”
The president, apparently mocking the media’s relationship with Biden, said: “Hi, are you enjoying your run? ‘Yes,’ Okay, great.”
“They don’t ask me those questions,” he said. “I have people. They have fire coming out of their eyes.”
During a lengthy speech before departing Minnesota, Trump said that a Biden presidency would “replace American freedom with leftwing facism” and mocked Biden’s embrace of some of the Democrats’ more progressive policy proposals. The president also touted his adminsitration’s economic gains while blaming China for the social and economic caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
“We built the greatest economy in the history of the world and now I’m going to have to do it again,” he said. “If’ we don’t win, they’re going down the tubes. We’ll end up with one very boring socialist country that will go to hell.”
Meanwhile, the president went on to say that Democrats are “taking away the Second Amendment.”
“They’re going to take away your guns,” Trump said. “As sure as your standing here today, if they win, that’s what’s going to happen.”
He added: “Remember this, I am the only thing standing in the way of your Second Amendment. It’s either going to be taken away or obliterated.”
Trump went on to tout his administration’s efforts, citing its record of lowering taxes and cutting regulations.
“We built a strong record,” Trump said, citing “veterans’ choice and veterans’ accountability.”
He added: “My heart is with law-abiding Americans and my heart is also with the great men and women of law enforcement who are treated very badly.”
The president said that his administration “will bring back law and order.”
“You know, the words law and order are words Democrats don’t like to use,” Trump said. “Nothing wrong with law and order.”
Trump said it is his “goal” to “secure safety in the streets” and help “innocent Americans rebuild their lives.”
“That’s what I’m here for,” Trump said. “Democrats are promising to elevate war and to bring it up to the White House in the form of Sleepy Joe Biden.”
The president also predicted that Democrats, during their convention this week won’t say “a word about innocent victims or violence.”
The president’s comments come ahead of an event in Mankato, Minn., Monday that the campaign has billed as “remarks about jobs and the economy,” not as a rally.
The Trump campaign is running the event, which is ticketed, Fox News has learned. It is unclear at this point how many guests were invited to attend, but guests are being seated with social distancing measures in place.
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The president, following the event in Minnesota, is expected to deliver remarks in Oshkosh, Wisc.
The events come as the president campaigns in key general election battleground states at the same time as the Democratic National Convention.
The president is expected to travel to Arizona on Tuesday, the second day of the Democrats’ event.
While the Trump campaign has not announced the president’s travel for next Thursday, campaign officials confirmed to Fox News that Trump is expected to visit Scranton, Pa. – the city where Biden was born and spent his early years. The trip should come hours before Biden is scheduled to give his presidential nomination acceptance address, which will be the biggest speech of his half-century career in politics.
Typically a presidential nominee will lie low as the opposition party holds its nominating convention – but Trump has repeatedly proven that he’s not one to adhere to political traditions.
Fox News’ Mark Merideth and Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.
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