While 10 Democrats spent two-plus hours Thursday night making the case for why they are uniquely suited to beating Donald Trump in 2020, the President traveled to Baltimore to do what he does best: Throw red meat to adoring fans.
In this case, the fans were House Republicans, who were in Baltimore – a city Trump referred to as a “rodent and rat-infested mess” over the summer – for their annual retreat.
Trump’s speech, which ran for 68 minutes, was a sort of greatest hits album for the President as he railed against paper straws, windmills and always, always, always Democrats.
Below the most, er, notable lines from Trump’s speech.
1. “Winning is a good thing, isn’t it? Winning? It’s a good thing.”
I, for one, am not bored of winning. Like at all. And away we go!
2. “A man who was not expected necessarily to win, and then he got in gear and he was brutal and brilliant and he did a great job, now soon-to-be and now Congressman Dan Bishop.”
Bishop, who won the 9th District special election in North Carolina earlier this week, was running in a district that Trump carried by 12 points in 2016 and which has not been represented in Congress by a Democrat since the early 1960s.
3. “They turned out and they turned out like people never expected and they were – that was just a great evening of television.”
Trump is talking here, I think, about the coverage of the North Carolina special election. Regardless, it serves as a good reminder that his lens on literally everything is cable television.
4. “Our nation is stronger today than ever before. We have the greatest equipment.”
Our equipment is truly great. Some say the greatest in the history of equipment. Ever.
5. “But we now have the greatest equipment. When I came in two-and-a-half years ago our equipment was old and tired.”
No one wants “old and tired” equipment. No one.
6. “We are really – if you look at what’s going on in certain countries in the Middle East and you look at the straits and you see the ships and they’re being taken and they’re being – not too often by the way because frankly Iran is a much different country than it was two-and-a-half years ago.”
A truly amazing word salad.
7. “We’ve had tremendous success with opioid.”
With opioid, huh?
8. “Thanks to the entire Republican team in Congress we passed the biggest tax cut and reform in American history.”
This is false; it was not the largest tax cut in history.
9. “We’re taking in billions and billions of tariffs. And they’re eating the cost. This is not being born very much by us. They’re eating the cost.”
Trump’s claim that China is paying for the tariffs is simply wrong. US companies and consumers pay for them.
10. “We have done things that very, very few have even thought about doing but we also need to prepare for the coming fight because the traditions and beliefs that have made the American dream possible are under attack like never before.”
“Sadly, the American Dream is dead.” – Donald Trump, announcing his candidacy for president in 2015.
11. “It’s very hard to beat a socialist when you have a very wealthy country.”
I was not aware of that!
12. “And then they talk about plastic straws – I said, what about the plate? What about the wrapper that’s made out of a much tougher plastic?”
Boom! Roasted! Take that, environmentalists!
13. “The bulb that we’re being forced to use, number one most importantly the light’s no good – I always look orange. And so do you – the light is the worst.”
“I always look orange.” – The President of the United States (Context: The Trump administration rolled back standards on energy-efficient light bulbs earlier this month.)
14. “It’s gases inside, and read what they say – if it breaks bring it to your local whatever, have it wrapped, have it this – what are we doing? What are we doing?”
I was just wondering the same thing. (He’s still talking about light bulbs.)
15. “No more cows, no more planes. I guess no more people, right. Because Kevin is just like a cow, he’s just smaller.”
Donald Trump on the Green New Deal. And also on House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s similarities to a bovine.
16. “They’re standing behind AOC. I call her Cortez because you don’t have enough time to go through the whole name. I just go Cortez. They don’t like that when you call her Cortez. But her name’s Cortez, too – too long.”
Uh huh. Tell me more about this naming theory.
17. “Can you imagine those two guys in a room. Here’s Xi and here’s Sleepy Joe, what. Where am I? Where am I? Just sign here Sleepy Joe, just sign here.”
Donald Trump, on what a summit between the Chinese president and the 2020 Democratic frontrunner might look like. Totally normal stuff!
18. “Because one thing I’ve learned about politics, you can say something one day that’s just absolutely insane like they’re saying and then about two weeks later say the exact opposite and nobody will ever even call you on it.”
That sounds a lot like a certain politician I know…
19. “Even though I guess they should be watching the debate but they’re probably watching us, but we have a lot. See those cameras back there. We kept the reporters out but we have those cameras. See those red bulbs.”
Your regular reminder that Trump cares deeply and passionately about his media coverage. Political death for Trump isn’t bad press, it’s no press. He lives in terror of being irrelevant.
20. “She didn’t like stairs. She didn’t like air – she didn’t like a lot.”
Hillary Clinton didn’t like stairs? Or air? How did she feel about fairs? Or hares? Look, in truth, I don’t care.
21. “The winner of Wisconsin is Donald Trump.”
The 2016 election ended 1,039 days ago.
22. “Donald Trump has won the great state of Michigan. Donald Trump has won the great state of Pennsylvania, great state of North Carolina and the great state of Florida, the great state of South Carolina.”
Ah yes, South Carolina, that critical general election battleground.
23. “I wish we could wear them. Nobody would ever look at my hair and criticize me. I’d wear that hat – I’d never take it off.”
Donald Trump on cowboy hats.
24. “I don’t have to worry about hairspray. Don’t have to worry about my hair blowing, beautifully blowing in the wind.”
What’s that about hair blowing beautifully in the wind?
25. “I don’t think Rockefeller can beat me in Texas. The real Rockefeller, the first Rockefeller. I think he’d have a hard time beating me in Texas.”
Well, John D. Rockefeller was from New York, so…
26. “Meanwhile, Democrats want to confiscate guns from law-abiding Americas so they’re totally defenseless when somebody walks into their house with a gun. It’s like whatever you want. Whatever you want. I’m defenseless. Whatever you want. How crazy is this.”
This isn’t true – no Democratic candidate is proposing total gun confiscation – but Beto O’Rourke’s pledge to conduct a mandatory buyback of assault weapons during Thursday night’s debate will soon become a Trump talking point. I guarantee it.
27. “You know, the Republican Party is actually loved in this country and I think in a certain way loved like never before because they see that we’re fighting for this country – we’re fighting for what we grew up with – what the – the values that we want.”
Not close to true! Neither national political party is terribly popular but Republicans are especially un-liked. Just more than 1 in 3 people had a favorable view of the GOP in Gallup polling earlier this year.
28. “I said, it’s hard to impeach somebody who didn’t do anything wrong. The Mueller report is out. There’s no collusion after two and a half years.”
Generally true. But no mention by Trump of the repeated incidents in the report where he appeared to engage in obstructive behavior to block or slow the Mueller probe.
29. “Try dropping a windmill someplace close to your house. Try selling your house. They make noise, they kill all the birds.”
Trump’s war on windmills is one of the very few things he has been consistent on throughout his life.
30. “That’s why people are loving the Republican Party again.”
Again, no, at least according to polling.
31. “We’re going to win so much we’re going to win, win, win.”
That’s three wins! Or is it winning times three. Mind blown.
32. “We’re going to keep winning, winning, winning.”
Yes, you just said that.
33. “We’re going to keep winning, winning, winning.”
This is not the same quote. He actually said it again! This feels like a good place to end.