Pres. Trump seeks to unite Ohio GOP with dinner speech

Local News

Telling a roomful of about 2,000 attendees of a $250 a plate Ohio GOP annual dinner, President Trump took credit for putting 4-million Americans to work. 

“Today there are more Americans working than at any time ever in the history of our country,” said Trump. 

Then he moved on to try and build support for statewide Republican candidates ahead of November midterms by tearing down their Democratic rivals. 

“You have left wing liberals and radicals trying to tear down our institutions, disrespect our American flag, demean our law enforcement,” he said. 

The President backed everyone from Republican Senator Rob Portman to Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Mike DeWine and running mate, Secretary of State Jon Husted. 

“They’re a great combination they’re tough they’re smart, they love their state I’ve known them a long time they are really something very special and you’re lucky to have them,” said the President. 

Before leaving, Trump touched on the race between Democratic incumbent Senator Sherrod Brown and Republican Jim Renacci, questioning how Renacci could lose.

“I don’t see Ohio as liberal. Are you liberal? Anybody, like, liberal? I don’t get it,” Trump said. 

Then he ended his nearly 1-hour long, last minute Republican pep rally by telling the people of Ohio they are “very special”.

“God Bless you and goodnight. Thank you very much,” he said. 

Several protesters gathered before Trump’s speech and also voiced their displeasure with his appearance in Columbus.

The group marched until Trump had left town.

“I just wanted him to know that he’s not welcome here,” said Joanna Marshall. “I don’t want him to be able to come and think that there’s going to be a whole crowd of people welcoming him and welcoming his ideas here.”

Trump flew to Ohio with his wife, Melania, and the couple headed straight for a tour of the neonatal intensive care unit at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, where babies born drug-dependent receive specialized treatment.

He was greeted at the Columbus airport by Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, who joined the president at the hospital and was also attending the dinner.

Both the president and first lady have said they are focused on the epidemic of opioid addiction that is killing tens of thousands of people a year.

After touring the medical unit, Trump sat with a group of older children as they colored pictures of American flags and hearts with red, white and blue. He told them they were doing a “great job.”

Trump last visited Ohio on Aug. 4 to rally for U.S. House candidate Troy Balderson, a GOP state senator. Balderson was certified Friday as the winner of a special election to fill the unexpired term of longtime Republican congressman Pat Tiberi, who retired in January.

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