Tuesday, 19 June, 2018

Trump privately slamming GOP candidate in Pa. House race as 'weak'

US President Donald Trump delivers a speech at the Make America Great Again Rally in Moon Township Pennsylvania on Saturday. — AFP US President Donald Trump delivers a speech at the Make America Great Again Rally in Moon Township Pennsylvania on Saturday. — AFP
Ebony Burgess | 13 March, 2018, 11:38

President Donald Trump spoke at a campaign rally in western Pennsylvania on Saturday, in support of his policies and of Republican candidate Rick Saccone, who is running for a House seat. In the 2016 USA presidential election, Trump won the district by about 20 percentage points over Democrat Hillary Clinton. Trump said. "That means if we catch a drug dealer, death penalty".

Trump has recently come out in support of executing drugs dealers, suggesting that the punishment could be used to help tackle the opioid crisis.

Saccone had no previously announced events Sunday, opting instead for the local media afterglow of his Saturday night rally with Trump, who warned Pennsylvania Republicans not to be "conned by this guy Lamb" and his pitch as an independent-minded Democrat. Democrat Doug Jones defeated Republican Roy Moore in Alabama's special election previous year to fill the Senate seat vacated by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and Democrats held onto a House seat in California following Xavier Becerra's appointment to California attorney general. There are also doubts about how far Mr Trump's policies will go towards resuscitating the battered American steel industry.

Trump occasionally mentioned Saccone, calling him "handsome" and insulting his opponent as "Lamb the sham".

"A lot of steel mills are now opening up because of what I did", the President told the crowd in this conservative district. While maintaining that he hadn't done anything wrong to merit impeachment, Trump referred to the 14-term California congresswoman, one of a handful of Black women serving in the U.S. Congress, as a "low-IQ individual".

"It's a little scary as tight as it is, but Republicans are still enthusiastic to keep this seat", said Carol Heinecke, a 57-year-old engineer. He added the line that would become the sound bite of the night: "He is a sleepy son of a bitch, I'll tell you".

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The same report alleged that Trump "often leaps into a passionate speech about how drug dealers are as bad as serial killers and should all get the death penalty", since he believes showing sympathy to drug offenders will never work. "We love Trump", one man yelled. "That said, this is more an issue of a mediocre candidate, and mediocre is a kind way to describe him, versus a very good candidate".

Lamb has run as an independent-minded figure. "This is a "yes" vote!"

"Candidate quality and quality campaigns matter", said Courtney Alexander, a spokeswoman with the Congressional Leadership Fund, a GOP superPAC close to House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., that has invested $3.5 million into the race.

Ricocheting off the teleprompter, the president showed the kind of free-flowing attitude that his aides have said they expect to see throughout this year. "I don't think so".

Barrow reported from Murrysville and Trafford.

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