CNN —  

President Donald Trump traveled to western Pennsylvania Saturday night on a rescue mission: State Rep. Rick Saccone (R) is fighting for his political life in a House special election on Tuesday and the President’s visit was aimed at rallying the GOP base in a district he won by 20 points in 2016.

Trump’s speech — largely unscripted – ranged (and raged) for more than an hour, and barely mentioned Saccone until the end when Trump handed Saccone the mic and allowed him to say a few words.

It felt more like a therapy session – with Trump venting and attacking his enemies – than a political rally. I went through the entire transcript and pulled out the most memorable lines. They’re below.

1. “Hello Pittsburgh. Hello Pittsburgh.”

“Hello Cleveland!”

2. “And a lot of steel mills are now opening up because of what I did.”

Trump signed the steel tariff measure on Thursday. So, that’s, um, fast work.

3. “Pennsylvania is the state that gave us the 45th president of the United States.”

This is beyond third person. It’s like fourth person, says a reporter for CNN.

4. “A lot of evil. A lot of bad people. A lot of bad people.”

This is Trump talking about Washington. It’s a throwaway line, but think about what he is saying here. It’s not just that there are people who disagree with him in Washington. It’s that these people are bad, they are evil. Rhetoric like this has consequences. I think Trump knows that but doesn’t really care because it works for him.

5. “President Moon of South Korea said without Donald Trump, the Olympics would have been a total failure. That’s true. True.”

Ok, follow this logic: Trump is tough on Kim Jong Un and North Korea → Kim backs down off his nuclear threats → Olympics succeed. Done and done!

6. “It’s a little hard to sell tickets when you think you are going to be nuked.”


7. “He’s a sleeping son of a bitch.”

This is a sentence from the President of the United States. (He’s talking about “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd.)

8. “But they show me young, handsome.”

Self deprecation, thy name is not Donald Trump.

9. “They are very happy with what I’m doing.”

Trump is talking here about Japan. And he’s wrong.

10. “A certain anchor on CNN … fake as hell CNN, the, fake as hell CNN, the worst, so fake, fake news.”

This is a “sentence” from the President of the United States.

11. “Arnold Schwarzenegger failed when he did the show and he was a movie star. Martha Stewart failed.”

How did Trump get onto the ratings for “The Celebrity Apprentice”? Oh, I have no idea.

12. “NBC is perhaps worst than CNN, I have to tell you. And MSNBC is horrible.”

Updated Trump media rankings: 1. CNN 2. NBC 3. MSNBC (“horrible”).

13. “So here they are, they are outside, these wonderful representatives, very high level from South Korea, are saying all of these things, de-nuke, and all of the things that they can’t believe, because it’s like five years ahead of schedule.”

Every English teacher in the country just fainted.

14. “No, no, they are saying Obama. Obama. Obama. Obama was driving you down.”

Your guess is as good as mine. Quite literally.

15. “I’m joking about being president for life.”

“There is a grain of truth in every joke.”

16. “Did you see the other day, 96% of what they do, all I do is good stuff, the economy is the best it’s ever been.”

I read this “sentence” five times. I have absolutely no idea what he is saying. Like, none.

17. “Your coal – by the way, folks, some of you are in the coal world, your coal is coming back big, big, big.”

B-I-G. Yuge. The best coal comeback. Believe me. Many people are saying it.

18. “But your steel is coming back. It’s all coming back …”

19. “… And six months prior to the election in 2020, every one of those guys, we really endorse Donald Trump, we think he has to.”

These are back-to-back sentences from Donald Trump. Also, if you look up “non sequitur” in the dictionary, you get these two sentences.

20. “I was watching, during the campaign, and Hillary was sitting right there, and Pocahontas was up, she was so angry, you know, I think she’s losing the audience.”

“Pocahontas” is Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts). As for the rest: ???????.

21. “I would love to beat Oprah. I know her weakness.”

Is this like an Achilles heel type situation? Or is Trump issuing some sort of vague threat to Oprah?

22. “Women, women, we love you, we love you.”

Offered without comment.

23. “We got 52%, right, 52.”

Trump is saying that he won 52% of the vote among women. He didn’t. He got 41%. Trump got 52% among white women.

24. “By the way, if we coasted for two-and-a-half years, we did a hell of a job.”

Trump suggesting he could do nothing more until 2020 and he should still get elected because of everything he has done to date.

25. “I love the policeman. I love the fireman.”

I love lamp.

26. “And Maxine Waters, a very low IQ individual.”

Not for nothing: Waters is an African-American woman. And, yes, Trump is well aware of that fact.

27. “She’s a low IQ individual. She can’t help it.”

So: Trump is suggesting that the reason Waters criticizes him is because she is dumb and can’t help herself. Yes, that’s it.

28. “And Conor Lamb, Lamb the sham.”

Credit where credit is due: “Lamb the Sham” is a damn good nickname. (Lamb is the Democrat running against Saccone in the 18th district special election.)

29. “I hear he’s better looking. I think I’m better looking than him. I do. I do.”

This is a sentence from the President of the United States.

30. “And you did a great job on television today. I watched you, Rick, that was a great interview.”

Trump is obsessed with cable TV. Despite all of his denials, he consumes massive amounts of cable. It’s the lens through which he sees the world.

31. “They want to stop DACA, DACA is their issue.”

Trump ordered the end of DACA last September.

32. “[Democrats] are getting killed now by the DACA recipients. They are getting killed.”

There’s zero evidence that this is true.

33. “He was a great cheerleader for the country. But not great on the trade.”

Trump on Ronald Reagan. I am sure the Republican establishment enjoyed that assessment.

34. “You say ‘European Union.’ Sounds innocent. It’s not so innocent.”

Believe me. Not innocent. Unions – and all that.

35. “Did I do a good job? Atlanta?”

Trump is talking here about the Republican victory in the Georgia 6th district special election last year. And, yes, he is asking for praise. The insecurity, it burns.

36. “So I brought him down in a period of four days, brought him down from 58 to 48.”

Trump is claiming credit for keeping Jon Ossoff, the Democratic nominee in Georgia, under 50% in the initial primary vote. He had nothing to do with that, and does anyone in southwestern Pennsylvania care even if he did?

37. “We don’t have a big margin. It’s just a very small.”

Republicans controlled 241 seats following the 2016 election – among the highest watermarks the party has been at in the House since the late 1940s.

38. “No way he’s going for the things.”

Yeah. I bet he doesn’t go for the things. No way.

39. “We have done more than any first term administration in the history of our country.”

[Narrator’s voice] He hasn’t.

40. “But you like me? I think so, right? I like you, too. I love you.”

Insecurity level: Off the charts!

41. “It sounds like a Penn State game. It sounds like an Ohio State football game.”

The President of the United States, modestly describing the noise level at his rallies. This is totally normal!

42. “Thank you. So the Democrats are the party of sanctuary cities.”

Non sequitur: “A conclusion or statement that does not logically follow from the previous argument or statement.”

43. “We are building the wall. 100 100%. 100%. 100%.”

That’s 400%. Which is a lot.

44. “I’ve got all the big builders, the best ones in the world. I know the best builders. We want to use the good builders, not the bad ones.”

This is a statement from the President of the United States.

45. “They all want to be on councils. They call them blue ribbon councils where we take Melania – great, great first lady. She’s great.”

Non sequitur: “A conclusion or statement that does not logically follow from the previous argument or statement.”

46. “You think her life is so easy, folks? Not so easy.”

“I think Melania’s life is easy.” – No one, ever.

47. “I don’t know that the United States frankly is ready for it. They should be ready for it.”

The “it” Trump is talking about here is giving convicted drug dealers the death penalty, which he says is how China solved its opium problem.

48. “I never did polling on that. I don’t know if that’s popular. I don’t know if that’s unpopular.”

This is a real evergreen quote for Trump.

49. “We can’t just keep setting up blue ribbon committees with your wife and your wife and your husband, and they meet and they have a meal and they talk.”

Trump JUST praised Melania for serving on a blue ribbon commission on the opioid problem. Now he is saying these blue ribbon commissions are useless. Good times!

50. “When your daughter walks home. And they don’t use guns. You never saw guns. The NRA happens to be very good people, by the way.”

Non sequitur: “A conclusion or statement that does not logically follow from the previous argument or statement.”

51. “Hillary wouldn’t have liberated those towns.”

The 2016 election ended 487 days ago.

52. “So we are doing a great, great job.”

[Pats self on back repeatedly]

53. “I look forward to it. I look forward to it. I really do. I really do.”

Point of clarification: Does he look forward to it?

54. “I’m not saying this as braggadocious.”

[narrator voice] He is.

55. “And, you know, I went to the Wharton School of Finance. That’s a great school. The best business school, I think.”

[strokes chin] I did not know that.

56. “But you’d be so bored because I could stand up, right? I’m very presidential.”

So so presidential. The most presidential president likely ever.

57. “If I came like a stiff, you guys wouldn’t be here tonight.”

Remember: Trump is, first and foremost, an entertainer. And he views the presidency through the lens of entertainment.

58. “I don’t know if I’m a good speaker. But every time I have a 25,000-seat stadium, we fill it up.”

Campaign rally as therapy session.

59. “Remember they said 270, you cannot – remember the famous 270? He cannot win the election because he cannot get above 270.”

See #51.

60. “The red board is all red. It is like red. Man, that board was red.”

The reddest.

61. “One of the greatest nights in the history of television in terms of people watching.”

This is Trump talking about election night 2016. And the way he describe it as a great night of television. Which tells you a lot. Hell, it tells you everything.

62. “The bad news is they want to take it away from us.”


63. “I went to school. I went to Wharton. I went to school here.”

How many adults do you know who tout where they went to business school not once, but twice in the course of a single conversation?

64. “Look at all those red hats, Rick. Look at all those hats. That’s a lot of hats.”

This feels like a good place to end.