Donald Trump held a rally on Tuesday in Phoenix, Arizona for absolutely no reason whatsoever. He seems to just enjoy the adoration from his most ardent supporters despite Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton’s insistence that Trump is not welcome after his vile remarks following the tragedy in Charlottesville.
Of course, his die hard fan base was there to greet him, anyway, along with thousands of protesters who lined the road to express their disapproval of those Charlottesville remarks by chanting “wrong side of history.”
— Arizona Votes (@AZVotes) August 22, 2017
— CNN (@CNN) August 23, 2017
Real pics from outside pic.twitter.com/DChN60csQU
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Trump was called on by the mayor of Phoenix to apologize his remarks about Charlottesville, but Ben Carson doubled down by saying the left was responsible for hate and division without addressing the neo-Nazis and white nationalists who caused that tragedy. He was followed by a niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who Trump trots out every time he wants to prove how not racist he is, who led a prayer and praised Trump.
Trump began his rally by praising hard-working Americans before making it clear that he wasn’t talking about anyone on the left. Americans are great, Trump said, because “we respect our Constitution, including the second amendment…and support our police officers.” He once again stated that all good Americans denounce the “thugs who perpetrate hate and violence” without clarifying who he meant.
The president also pointed out the “fake media” in the back of the room and led the crowds in booing them. He insisted that he did denounce “egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence” but didn’t mention that his first statement failed to denounce the neo-Nazis and white nationalists who led a march wearing Trump hats and chanting “Jews will not replace us.” He also defended Jeffrey Lord, who was fired by CNN for tweeting the words “seig heil.”
He repeated his entire first statement and blamed the media for interpreting it as a failure to speak out against those racists, although members of our allied countries, members of Trump’s own party, numerous charitable organizations, and even members of Trump’s own CEO council interpreted that statement the same way.
In addition to the mayor’s rebuke of the president indicating that Trump’s support there is in crisis, the two Republican Arizona senators, John McCain and Jeff Flake, both of whom have had contentious relationship’s with their party’s leader, were notably absent as well as Governor Doug Ducey, who did agree to meet Trump at the tarmac upon his plane landing.
It seems the majority of Arizona residents aren’t feeling so welcoming of Trump, either. In that Republican-leaning state, Trump’s approval rating is just 46 percent. While Republicans still support him at 74 percent, but his support has fallen dramatically since the 2016 elections with Independents (26.7 percent) and other voters unaffiliated with a party (33.3 percent).
For Trump’s statements at the rally, see video below:
Featured image screengrab via YouTube