Our live coverage has ended. Scroll through the posts below to see how President Trump's rally in Wilkes-Barre played out.
President Trump delivered remarks tonight at a rally for Rep. Lou Barletta in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.
During his speech, Trump touched on his meeting last month with Russian President Vladimir Putin, the upcoming midterm elections and his new strategy for getting funding to build a border wall.
In case you missed it, here are some takeaways from tonight's rally:
- On the Putin meeting: Trump defended his meeting with Putin in Helsinki, saying they "got along really well." He said the press wanted the two leaders to "have a boxing match."
- On the border wall: Trump told the crowd he'll tell Democrats he doesn't want to build a wall — and then, "they'll insist on building it."
- On a possible government shutdown: Trump said he'd be willing to push the government into a shutdown — either before the midterm elections in November or afterward — if Congress does not change the US immigration laws. "Whether it’s before or after, we are getting it or we are closing down government. We need border security. We need border security," Trump said.
- On election interference: Trump did not mention election interference tonight, instead referring vaguely to the "Russian hoax." This come just hours after his national security team stood in the White House and decried Russia's attack on American democracy.
Remember when President Trump got good press? He does.
He waxed nostalgically about those heady New York tabloid days — after spending much of the night railing against the media.
He continued: "I didn’t need this, but I love it."
It was a momentary riff in a speech that ran more than an hour. But in the next breath, he called the press "horrible, horrendous people."
President Trump raised the prospect of coming to Pennsylvania to watch a debate in the Senate race between Democratic Sen. Bob Casey and Republican congressman Lou Barletta.
"Is the President of the United States allowed to come and sit in the front row?" Trump asked.
Campaigning for Barletta tonight, Trump repeatedly assailed Casey, who is favored in the race.
He seemed to be joking about attending a debate, but who knows.
President Trump came up with an interesting way to get his border wall while holding a rally in Pennsylvania: Reverse psychology.
The President told the crowd he'll tell Democrats he doesn't want to build a wall — and then, "they'll insist on building it."
It was the beginning of a familiar ICE, immigration, border wall segment of his rally.
Trump defended ICE officers, calling them "warriors" and slammed Democrats.
Trump said he would be "taking some very tough actions."
"We need border security. We need border security," Trump said.
President Trump said he'd be willing to push the government into a shutdown — either before the midterm elections in November or afterward — if Congress does not change the US immigration laws.
This is not the first time Trump has alluded to a possible shutdown: Trump has said repeatedly threatened push the government into a shutdown ahead of the coming spending deadline in September if Congress does not fund his border wall and change the nation's immigration laws.
Here's one tweet threatening a shutdown:
Hours after his national security team stood in the White House and decried Russia's attack on American democracy, President Trump did not immediately mention election interference at a campaign rally Thursday night, instead referring to it vaguely as "a hoax."
"In Helsinki, I had a great meeting with (Russian President Vladimir) Putin. We got along really well," Trump said. "By the way, that’s a good thing, not a bad thing. Now, we’re being hindered by the Russian hoax — it’s a hoax, ok?"
As he defended his summit with Putin — which even many of his most staunch supporters called a debacle — Trump attacked the press and made no mention of election meddling.
"I’ll tell you what, Russia is very unhappy Trump won, that I can tell you," Trump said, a statement that Putin disputed last month in Helsinki, when he acknowledged he wanted Trump to win.
Trump defended his meeting with Putin, suggesting the criticism was a creation of the press.
The President did not mention how the Wall Street Journal editorial page and other conservative voices assailed his Putin meeting.
So far at least, his grievance-filled speech in Wilkes-Barre has not touched on one thing: Russian election hacking.
President Trump responded to a "lock her up" chant in Pennsylvania by saying, "Oh no. no. They only want to go after Republicans," appearing to refer to the Justice Department.
"They don't want to do anything," Trump said, adding that things would be changing soon.
Watch the moment:
President Trump, while endorsing Senate candidate Lou Barletta, slammed his opponent and current Sen. Bob Casey, saying he had never met him.
Trump called Casey "worse" than an obstructionist, adding that he would do whatever House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Senate Minority Chuck Schumer and Rep. Maxine Waters tell him.
Trump said Barletta is running "against somebody who's so overrated."