President Trump opened his rally vowing to defeat Joe Biden and touting his appointments of conservative judges, his efforts to rebuild the American military, the tax cuts that he championed and his vow to be the president of law and order.
"Republicans are the party of liberty, equality and justice for all," Trump said shortly after taking the stage. "We are the party of Abraham Lincoln and we are the party of law and order."
"Five months from now we're going to defeat Sleepy Joe Biden," he said, before mocking former Vice President Joe Biden by suggesting that he often doesn't know what state he's campaigning in. Trump criticized the media for failing to give him credit for the number of Americans who have now been tested for Covid-19 and played up
Trump argued that his administration's "incredible success in rebuilding America" stands in stark contrast to "the extremism, and destruction, and violence of the radical left." He argued that he sent in the National Guard after watching the protests in Minneapolis.
"You saw these thugs that came along -- these people call them protesters," he said, singling out the protesters in Seattle. "Americans have watched left wing radicals burn down buildings loot businesses, destroy private property, injure hundreds of dedicated police officers."
He charged that Democrats are trying to "demolish our heritage" — referring to the tearing down of Confederate monuments -- and replace it with their "oppressive regime." And he railed against the calls by some protesters to defund the police, claiming at one point that Americans will call 911 and the number will be out of service.
"These people are stone-cold crazy," Trump said.
Some context: On Saturday, Trump's campaign communications director asserted that the smaller-than-expected crowds were partially a result of interference by protesters — though none of the many CNN reporters and producers on the ground in Tulsa saw any incident with protesters trying to block supporters from attending.
The President had hoped that the Tulsa rally would mark a triumphant return to the campaign trail more than 100 days after the coronavirus shut down the country and halted all in-person campaigning.
Recent national polls have shown Trump falling far behind his Democratic rival, former Vice President Joe Biden, in head-to-head matchups. By trying to resume the massive gatherings that fueled his 2016 bid, Trump is hoping to reinvigorate his reelection bid in the midst of a pandemic, a recession and a national debate over racism.