LIMA — No matter where you looked in the UNOH Event Center Tuesday afternoon, you’d likely see Donald Trump Jr.’s face — projected onto walls, displayed on television screens or standing right in front of you. The “first son” took the spotlight and kept it until the crowd gave him a standing ovation.
“If there is one thing Donald Trump is wrong about is that you’d be sick of winning,” Trump topped with his 20-minute stump speech. “Are you sick of winning?”
The crowd responded with a lengthy “No!”
“You remember that speech?” Trump said. “I’m glad you’re with me on this one. Because I’m not sick of winning either.”
The 40-year-old has been active this election season traveling from state to state with his girlfriend, former Fox News anchor Kimberly Guilfoyle, and on Tuesday, the political duo came to Lima to pump up local conservatives about voting in the midterms.
“Trump is on the ticket. The other side has made no bones about it. They want to impeach him. For what? For the greatest job numbers in history. For the lowest all-time African-American employment? You want to reverse that? You want to reverse all-time low Hispanic unemployment? They must be racist,” Trump said.
While much of Trump’s message aligned with many of Republican talking points celebrating the last two years of President Donald Trump’s administration — low unemployment, two conservative judges on the court, talks with North Korea — his speech was clearly an offshoot of Trumpian tendencies, peppered with one-liners, flippant jokes and a steady bashing of the Democratic agenda.
Even when Trump rolled out his father’s proposed accomplishments, he did so while taking jabs at the work of former President Barack Obama, calling his statements “stupid” and labeling his career prior to holding the presidency as “handing out pamphlets.”
“ISIS — they were kicking Obama’s butt. They were the JV team that got elevated to varsity. Now they are non-existent. Why? Because we’re actually willing to fight, willing use our strength,” Trump said. “The world is watching. The world respects us again. The world recognizes that we have resolve. We have conviction and when we say we’re going to do something, we’re actually going to do it.”
While Trump may have headlined the rally, a surprise visit from Senate candidate Jim Renacci acted as the opener. Joining him on stage were Republican National Committee Co-Chair Bob Paduchik, Ohio Republican Party Chair Jane Timken, Allen County Republican Party Chairman Keith Cheney, state Rep. Bob Cupp, R-Lima, and state Sen. Matt Huffman, R-Lima.
Renacci spoke briefly about his incumbent opponent, Sen. Sherrod Brown, labeling the senator as a far-left liberal long-time politician misrepresenting himself as a populist in a conservative state.
Trump closed his speech with a call to action asking the crowd to vote for Renacci as well as Republican governor candidate Mike DeWine in order to continue his father’s legislative agenda.
“They understand what my father is doing,” Trump said of the two.
“How can anyone vote against finally winning? That’s the reality. We’re not dealing with an opponent who’s rational. We’re not dealing with someone in their right minds,” Trump said. “We can win this. There’s no reason we shouldn’t. The numbers speak for themselves.”
Reach Josh Ellerbrock at 567-242-0398.