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Trump Holds His First Post-Conviction Rally--in Nevada, in 100-Degree Weather

Yesterday, Donald Trump held his first post-conviction rally. It was outdoors in Las Vegas, in 100° F weather at noon. The rally was in a park not far from the airport and there was little shade there. In the previous days, he was in California doing closed fundraisers. The campaign said he raised $28 million at four fundraisers.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) was the warm-up act (not that anyone needed to be warmed up in the scorching desert heat).

Trump understood that holding a rally in such extreme conditions could be a problem, so his team passed out fans and water bottles and allowed supporters to carry umbrellas. Food trucks sold shaved ice and ice-cold drinks. Nevada GOP Chairman Michael McDonald was handed a lemon and turned it into lemonade. He said: "We will walk through hell to elect Donald Trump." McDonald has been indicted for being a fake elector in 2020, but his trial has been pushed into next year.

It was classic Trump: He complained about everything, including the fact that the teleprompters apparently couldn't take the heat and weren't working. He has given the same speech dozens, maybe hundreds, of times now. It is surprising that he needs a teleprompter. One would think a couple of index cards with simple phrases like "stolen election," "rigged trial," "immigrant invasion," and "sleepy Joe," would do the job. Maybe the cheese is slipping off the cracker. He did make a "joke" though. He said that the Secret Service was worried about the safety of the crowds and not about him. It's always about him. Then he said: "They never mentioned me. I'm up here sweating like a dog. This is hard work." Oops. There goes the dog-lovers vote. Dogs don't sweat through their fur, just a bit through their paw pads and their noses.

He returned to the teleprompter theme several times, in the middle of his speech saying: "I pay all this money to the teleprompter people, and I'd say 20% of the time they don't work." Surely some people in the audience must have been thinking: Why does he need them?

Trump did add one new thing to his standard speech though. He proposed eliminating federal income tax on tips. Given the large number of (tipped) service workers in Las Vegas, that might have gotten him some votes. Except for the fact that the large and powerful Culinary Union immediately slammed it as "wild campaign promises from a convicted felon." Also, the president can't eliminate taxes on tips. Only Congress can do that.

As usual, immigration was a main topic of Trump's speech. He said that Joe Biden's XO to shut down the border after 2,500 people had crossed it illegally in any day was a "little plan" that was pro-invasion, pro-child trafficking, pro-women trafficking, pro-human trafficking, and pro-drug dealer. It is interesting that he listed women and human trafficking as separate categories. Doesn't human trafficking also cover women trafficking? Aren't women humans? In any case, Biden's plan doesn't address trafficking at all. It just closes the border after a certain number of people have crossed it in a day.

During the speech Trump launched a new group, "Latino Americans for Trump." This is serious. He will make a big pitch to Latinos during the campaign, especially young men. Nevada has a large Latino population so Las Vegas is an excellent place to make the announcement. Joe Biden won the state by only 2 points in 2020, so it is definitely in play.

Nevada also has a competitive Senate race, with Sen. Jacky Rosen (D-NV) running for reelection. During his speech, Trump briefly mentioned the Senate race and one of the Republicans running for the nomination, Army veteran Sam Brown. But Trump didn't fully endorse him until after the rally by posting his endorsement on his boutique social media site. Seems like an unforced error to us. Why not have Brown get up on stage with Trump to introduce him to the crowd? Twelve people are running for the Republican nomination and having Brown on stage would have helped him, especially since the primary is tomorrow. The NRSC supports Brown, but Trump's former ambassador to Iceland, Jeff Gunter, also has a chance. (V)

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