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Trump Leads The Charge At Erie Rally

President Donald Trump pauses as he speaks at a campaign rally at Erie Insurance Arena, Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2018, in Erie, Pa. As Hurricane Michael pounded the Southeast on Wednesday, Trump took shelter at the campaign rally in Pennsylvania, where he sought to boost Republicans before the midterms. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

ERIE, Pa. — President Donald Trump took to the stage at a campaign event in Pennsylvania Wednesday, where he offered “thoughts and prayers” to those in the path of Hurricane Michael and sought to boost Republicans before the midterms.

Trump acknowledged the hurricane at the top of his rally in Erie, promising to “spare no effort” in the response. He promised to travel to Florida “very shortly.”

He added: “We will always pull through. … We will always be successful at what we do.”

Then Trump turned to politics. With weeks to go before the critical November elections, Trump and his fellow Republicans are engaged in an all-out midterms blitz. They have been invigorated by the successful nomination of Justice Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court and are seeking to use their victorious moment to unify the GOP and stave off Democratic backlash at the polls.

On Wednesday, Trump touted two Republican congressmen, Mike Kelly and Lou Barletta. Kelly is facing a challenge from Democrat Ron DiNicola, while Barletta is mounting an uphill campaign to unseat two-term Democratic Sen. Bob Casey. The president, who attended a fundraiser before the rally, also praised GOP gubernatorial candidate Scott Wagner.

Trump also celebrated Kavanaugh’s appointment amid Democratic opposition and sexual misconduct allegations against the nominee. Trump called it a “historic week,” saying, “What the radical Democrats did to Brett Kavanaugh and his beautiful family is a national disgrace.”

For weeks, Trump has been escalating his attacks on Democrats. He continued that effort Wednesday, claiming that Democrats want to “impose socialism and take over and destroy American health care.” He added: “Democrats want to abolish America’s borders and allow drugs and gangs to pour into our country.”

Trump also returned to one of his favorite themes — reliving his stunning 2016 victory.

“Was that the most exciting evening?” he said to cheers.

Trump also ticked through what he sees as his top achievements, including tax cuts and a new trade deal with Canada and Mexico. He talked about exiting the Iran nuclear deal and drew wild applause for mentioning his plans for a Space Force.

Trump attacked Casey for opposing Kavanaugh’s nomination, saying he had “joined the left-wing mob.” He also accused Casey, named for his politician father, for “banking on the name of his father.” Trump’s own father, Fred, was a successful real estate developer who set his son up in business. The New York Times recently reported that Donald Trump received at least $413 million from his father over the decades, much of that through dubious tax dodges, including outright fraud.

Earlier Wednesday, Trump published an op-ed in USA Today that called out Democrats over “Medicare for All” health care proposals. In his op-ed, Trump said Democrats have moved away from centrism, claiming the “new Democrats are radical socialists who want to model America’s economy after Venezuela.”

He added: “Government-run health care is just the beginning. Democrats are also pushing massive government control of education, private-sector businesses and other major sectors of the U.S. economy.”

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