President Donald Trump went full ‘law and order’ at his rally Thursday night in Jacksonville, Florida accusing his rival Democratic Joe Biden of going on an ‘anti-police crusade’ and calling law enforcement the ‘enemy.’
The president’s comments come on the heels of another night of violence in the United States, as two police officers in Louisville, Kentucky were shot during demonstrations after a Kentucky grand jury brought no charges against Louisville police for Breonna Taylor’s death.
‘Biden’s anti-police crusade must stop,’ the president demanded. ‘I will always stand with the heroes of law enforcement.’
President Donald Trump blasted Democrat Joe Biden for going on an ‘anti-police crusade’ during his rally Thursday night in Jacksonville, Florida
Trump described his opponent as ‘weak as hell,’ accused him of surrendering to a party of ‘flag burners, rioters and anti-police radicals’ and again claimed Biden was on drugs
Trump claimed his crowd in Jacksonville was 30,000 strong, while mocking Biden for holding small events due to the coronavirus pandemic
Trump described the Democratic ex-vice president as being ‘weak as hell.’
‘He surrendered his party to flag burners, rioters and anti-police radicals,’ the president said.
Trump brought up Wednesday night’s chaos in Kentucky – actually complimenting the state’s Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear for calling up the national guard.
But then accused Biden of backing the unrest.
‘Joe, they’re not peaceful!’ Trump yelled. ‘I think he believes it,’ the president smirked.
Biden has condemned violence and destruction related to this summer’s Black Lives Matter protests getting out of control.
Biden tweeted Wednesday, ‘Even amidst the profound grief & anger today’s decision generated, violence is never & can never be the answer.’
‘Those who engage in it must be held accountable,’ he said.
‘Jill & I are keeping the officers shot tonight in Louisville in our prayers. We wish them both a swift & full recovery,’ Biden added.
Trump, photographed with an American flag above him, mocked Biden for saying that the Black Lives Matter protests have been peaceful. ‘Joe, they’re not peaceful!’ Trump yelled
While Trump claimed Biden was on an ‘anti-police crusade,’ the Democratic nominee tweeted Wednesday night taht ‘violence is and never can be the answer.’ Biden added that the two officers shot were in his and wife Jill’s prayers
Trump supporters pose for photos before Thursday night’s rally, with one fan sporting a shirt that says ‘Trump Rallies Matter’
A Trump supporter waits for the president’s arrival Thursday night in Jacksonville, Florida sporting a stars and stripes suit
But Trump continued to say that he was candidate of law enforcement, while Biden was the candidate of Black Lives Matter – portraying the broader movement as violent and unhinged.
‘He even described law enforcement as the enemy,’ Trump said of Biden Thursday night, taking Biden’s words warning of the overmilitarization of the police out of context.
On July 8, the former vice president said, ‘Surplus military equipment for law enforcement: they don’t need that. The last thing you need is an up-armored Humvee coming into a neighborhood – it’s like the military invading.’
‘They don’t know anybody; they become the enemy. They’re supposed to be protecting these people,’ Biden said.
The president has made the claim before, with fact checkers rating it a distortion.
Trump spent Monday, Tuesday and now Thursday doing campaign rallies – with rallies planned for Friday and Saturday night as well.
Trump supporter Jonathan Riches waits for the arrival of the president Thursday night in Jacksonville, Florida sporting some Trump-branded eyewear
Trump’s supporters cheer for the president at his Thursday night rally in Jacksonville, Florida, which marked the second swing state he traveled to that day
One supporter wore Trump 2020 shoes and Trump 2020 socks to Thursday night’s rally in Jacksonville, Florida
He had traveled to North Carolina – another swing state – earlier to give an address on healthcare before traveling to Florida, his adopted homestate.
Trump, of course, brought up this fact with the audience – which he suggested was 30,000 strong, while Biden – who’s limited campaigning due to the coronavirus pandemic – can’t even fill his ‘circles,’ used at the Democrat’s events to ensure proper social distancing.
Biden has also kept a lighter campaign schedule.
‘Did you see he did a lid this morning again? Lid. Lid. Do you know what a lid is?’ Trump asked the crowd. ‘A lid is when you put out the word that you’re not going to be campaigning today. That he won’t be working today.’
Trump suggested Biden could be ‘right’ when it came to this tactic.
‘Think of it, supposing he never campaigns and he wins, do you know how badly I’m going to feel?’ he asked the audience. ‘I’m working hard.’
Trump again hammered Biden for being a ‘low energy individual,’ which echoed the nickname he gave to former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush in 2016 during the GOP primary.
‘He’s the lowest energy individual I’ve ever seen,’ Trump said of 77-year-old Biden.
The president then turned his attention to the first presidential debate, which will take place Tuesday night in Cleveland, Ohio.
And like he has for weeks, Trump accused Biden of being on drugs.
‘They’ll give him a big shot of something,’ Trump said looking ahead to the debate. ‘He’ll be Superman for about 15 minutes.’
The president lashed out at other familiar targets too.
He, again, went after Rep. Ilhan Omar, two days after he suggested that the U.S. wasn’t her country, as she was born in Somalia before becoming a U.S. citizen.
On Thursday, Trump sarcastically said, ‘She loves our country very much.’
‘She has total disrespect for our country and I think she has hatred for our country,’ he said, being serious now. ‘I would say Omar is a big reason we’re going to win. They’re not too fond of her in Minnesota.’
Trump’s campaign has targeted Minnestoa as a state Hillary Clinton won that the president might be able to flip in 2020.
The president also pointed to the unrest in Minneapolis following the Memorial Day death of George Floyd as a reason the state could switch parties.
Trump also rehashed – inaccurately – journalist Ali Velshi getting hit with a rubber bullet during unrest in Minneapolis after Floyd’s death at the hands of a white police officer.
‘Behind him the entire city was burning down,’ Trump said, ridiculing the MSNBC reporter for calling it a peaceful protests. ‘He got his on the knee with a cannister of teargas,’ the president said, mixing up the projectile.
‘They say it hurts. That is only going 52 miles per hour. A bullet goes about 2000 miles per hour,’ Trump said.