On Oct. 10, President Donald J. Trump visited Erie, Pa. Trump’s visit marked the first time a sitting president has visited Erie in 14 years. Trump arrived at the Erie insurance Arena, which was filled to capacity. As reported in the Erie Times-News, Erie Bureau of Fire Chief Guy Santone estimated the rally’s crowd at about 9,000. Approximately another 3,000 people gathered outside the arena to watch the rally on a large video screen set up there.
When the president finally came onstage he was met with cheers and chants from his supporters. He started his speech by offering the “thoughts and prayers of our entire nation” to those affected by the hurricane down south. He continued to rally the people by talking about him winning the election in 2016. He spoke about how he was supposed to listen to how you kept winning swing states, which ultimately made him win the electoral college. Trump called himself winning the election, “the greatest revolution to ever take place in our country.”
President Trump also criticized the left wing, calling them, “the party of crime,” and, “radical.”
The president told the crowd a lot about the urgency of bringing the coal and steel business and jobs to Pennsylvania. However, the primary reason for his visit was to campaign for his second term in 2020 and to endorse Congressman Mike Kelly and Representative Lou Barletta.
There were thousands of supporters at the rally, but there were also some protesters. The protesters bore signs that bashed Trump and anyone who supports him along with posters about Brett Kavanaugh. The protesters were mostly promoting the impeachment of Trump and how women’s allegations, particularly those against Kavanaugh, should be believed. Gun rights activist Kaitlin Bennett was in Erie for the rally and spoke with some of the liberal protesters, including some who threatened and verbally attacked her.
Overall, Trump’s speech was meant to excite potential voters in the upcoming election, especially the Republican citizens of Erie, to go out and vote red. Based on the size and enthusiasm of the crowd, the speech was successful in doing so.