At a Phoenix rally last night, Donald Trump gave an unhinged, rambling, and angry 77-minute speech, much of which was directed at the news media, which he blamed for dividing the country and misrepresenting his response to Charlottesville.
“It’s time to expose the crooked media deceptions. They’re very dishonest people. The only people giving a platform to these hate groups is the media itself and the fake news.”
Trump whipped the crowd up into a frenzy, got them chanting CNN Sucks! CNN Sucks! and basically provoked them into shouting at the media in attendance (and boy, did they). He called out Jeff Flake and John McCain (though he did not mention those who died on the USS McCain).
Trump offered no good wishes for @SenJohnMcCain in his cancer battle and no mention of the sailors lost on the USS John S. McCain IN ARIZONA— Matthew Cooper (@mattizcoop) August 23, 2017
He hinted that he might still pardon Joe Arpaio. He castigated the “anarchist” protestors. He said he’d build the Wall, said that he’d end NAFTA, and expressed his usual litany of grievances. He fumed for over an hour. Also, he lied a lot.
So I watched Pres. Trump on CNN live tell the crowd that CNN has turned off the live feed of his speech.— Dianne Gallagher (@DianneG) August 23, 2017
I watched that on CNN.
He also promised “beautiful clean coal.” He has no idea what clean coal is.
"They're gonna take it out of the ground and clean it."— Kate Aronoff (@KateAronoff) August 23, 2017
ICYMI Trump has absolutely no idea what the term clean coal means.
By the end of the rally, even much of the audience had tired of his ranting and many walked out. From the Washington Post:
But as the night dragged on, many in the crowd lost interest in what the president was saying.
Hundreds left early, while others plopped down on the ground, scrolled through their social media feeds or started up a conversation with their neighbors.
Trump supporters would have us believe otherwise, however.
Trump supporters desperately spreading fake photos on Twitter "from" Trump's Phoenix Rally. pic.twitter.com/NzEG8I04zX— Matt McDermott (@mattmfm) August 23, 2017
He did keep one constituency happy, however.
Those Trump supporters are just good people, aren’t they? Jesus.
This Trump supporter is shouting at protestors: "McCain needs to die now!" pic.twitter.com/pwjogHfYgH— David Catanese (@davecatanese) August 22, 2017
I wouldn't wish seeing this about your own father on my worst enemy. May God help these people who inflict such cruelty in the world. https://t.co/2wV3yFI1Hn— Meghan McCain (@MeghanMcCain) August 23, 2017
Meanwhile, there was a large number of counter-protestors at the rally, although police ultimately used tear gas and pepper spray on them with very little provocation. Trump, by the way, said there were no protestors. HA!
This is the largest demonstration of counter protesters that I've seen at any of Trumps rally's since he became president. pic.twitter.com/AgM45H81dT— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel_) August 23, 2017
@jonfavs please retweet The Phx rally was completely peaceful. Tear gas used to disperse the crowd prior to the rally let out. It worked.— r n (@lowercase_ryan) August 23, 2017
Trump railed; the crowd fomented; and police quelled dissent with violence. It was an ugly night in America.
The media didn’t react well to the speech. Don Lemon probably had the best summation:
Wow. Don Lemon doesn't hold back. pic.twitter.com/wCBQoat74B— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) August 23, 2017
Jake Tapper, more succinctly:
These two former British ambassadors were not impressed, either.
Two former British ambassadors to Washington have now weighed in - one said Trump made him "puke", the other saw parallels with 1933 Germany pic.twitter.com/DE3XJymLKo— Nick Bryant (@NickBryantNY) August 23, 2017
— Aside from the rally, we also learned that Trump got into a profanity-laced shouting match with Mitch McConnell on the phone, largely over Russia and the Russian sanctions. Meanwhile, in private, McConnell has expressed no confidence in Trump’s ability to lead the Republican party or even gain a basic understanding of government. He also expressed horror at Trump’s Charlottesville comments. The two basically hate each other now, which doesn’t bode well for their agenda. They haven’t spoken to each other in weeks.
— Meanwhile, and related: A college football announcer by the name of Robert Lee was pulled off of University of Virginia games because of his name. That’s how bad things are right now.
Just received this email from an ESPN executive re the Robert Lee controversy. pic.twitter.com/OuBORlWO9f— Yashar Ali (@yashar) August 23, 2017
— The first excerpt from Hillary’s book on the campaign has hit. She describes what it was like to have Trump standing behind her during the debate:
Hillary Clinton describes the moment in the second debate when Trump followed her on stage: "My skin crawled" pic.twitter.com/RSOY1Ci9wF— Axios (@axios) August 23, 2017
— Speaking of Hillary, Melania Trump thanked her daughter, Chelsea, for sticking up for Baron Trump.
Dear Matty-Barron is A KID. No child should be talked about in the below manner-in real life or online. And for an adult to do so? For shame https://t.co/p9jkGbMG4C— Chelsea Clinton (@ChelseaClinton) August 22, 2017
I think that more or less catches us up on last night.