Trump touts Kavanaugh confirmation at raucous Iowa rally

COUNCIL BLUFFS, IOWA – President Trump on Tuesday celebrated the installation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court and savaged Democrats who opposed his nomination at a raucous campaign rally in a key battleground state. 
A seemingly upbeat Trump hailed the confirmation of Kavanaugh as the apex of a “historic week for America” but warned thousands of supporters donning his signature red campaign hats that the fight is not over yet, claiming Democrats might try to force him off the court. 
“The Democrats have become too extreme and they’ve become, frankly, too dangerous to govern. They’ve gone wacko,” the president said, prompting cheers from the crowd at the 9,000-seat Mid-America Center.
The president suggested that Democrats might try to pack the courts to dilute its newly cemented conservative majority or attempt to impeach Kavanaugh over the sexual misconduct allegations that nearly derailed his nomination. 
“Besides that, I have to go first, right?” Trump quipped about impeachment. 
Trump is touting Kavanaugh’s confirmation as one of his biggest wins during a frantic stretch of campaign travel ahead of the November midterm elections, an effort to spur conservative voters to turn out to the polls in part out of disgust with how Democrats tried to keep him off the bench. 
But the president’s comments about the Kavanaugh allegations has also fired up voters on the left and some advisers have warned him his mockery of one of the justice’s accusers could backfire against Republicans. 
“If Democrats take control they will try to reverse our amazing progress and plunge our country into gridlock and maybe into poverty and ultimately into chaos,” Trump said. 
Some of the loudest roars came when Trump mocked Sen. Dianne Feinstein (Calif.), the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, for denying that she leaked Christine Blasey Ford’s sexual assault accusations to the media. 
“In other words, did she leak it? 100 percent. No, I don’t want to get sued — 99 percent,” Trump said.
That prompted a deafening chant of “lock her up” from the crowd, a slogan typically reserved for his former Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton.
“I think they’re talking about Feinstein. Can you believe it,” Trump said.  
When Trump mentioned his 2016 Democratic opponent later in the rally, attendees revived the “lock her up” chant.
Trump injected some local flavor into his usual stump speech, touting his new directive lifting restrictions on ethanol in gasoline. The measure, which would allow fuel with 15 percent ethanol to be sold year-round, is popular in Iowa, a major corn-producing state. 
The president said Democrats would “end ethanol,” even though many of them support the fuel additive. “They will take it away,” he said. 
He also hailed a new agreement with Mexico and Canada to revise the North American Free Trade Agreement, which allayed fears among farm-state officials that Trump would rip up the agreement entirely. 
The president largely avoided discussing other news of the day in his nearly 90 minutes on stage. He did not address the resignation of U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley.
Trump scolded Saudi Arabia for failing to properly compensate the U.S. for its military defense, but made no mention of the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi, a Washington Post contributor who has been an outspoken critic of the Saudi government.
Instead, the president’s speech was littered with a number of anecdotes and claims that he recycles at many of his campaign rallies.
He touted the GOP-crafted tax-cut bill passed last year, emphasized the need for stricter immigration laws, hailed low unemployment numbers for minority groups and recounted a generic story about securing a low price on the U.S.’s new embassy in Jerusalem.
“I could go on all night but I want to get the hell out of here, OK?” he joked.
Iowa is home to several competitive races, including Gov. Kim Reynolds’ (R) reelection effort and Rep. David Young’s (R) bid to remain in Congress. Both were invited on stage to speak, and Trump also encouraged attendees to support Rep. Rod Blum (R-Iowa) and Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts (R), as the rally was held just a few miles from the Iowa-Nebraska border.
The Hawkeye State will prove crucial to Trump’s reelection bid in 2020. The president carried Iowa in the 2016 general election against Hillary Clinton, but lost it to Republican Sen. Ted Cruz (Texas) during the GOP primary. 
Tags Brett Kavanaugh Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court nomination David Young Dianne Feinstein Donald Trump Hillary Clinton Iowa Nikki Haley Ted Cruz Trump rally
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