Calling it the "political equivalent of an arena rock revival tour," John Avlon said the freshness has faded, but Trump rally audience is "feeding off familiarity."
"They came to hear the hits, not the new material. So there was Trump, claiming he accomplished more in two and a half years than any president ever. Never mind that FDR and Harry Truman have him beaten their first 100 days alone. He played his equivalent of Freebird, calling the Russian investigation a witch hunt again. And the man who refuses to criticize Vladimir Putin repeated his claim that no one's been tougher on Russia than him.
"But what really stood out last night were Trump's powers of projection. He loves to accuse his political opponents of the sins he's credible been accused of. He painted a picture of Democrats, quote, 'driven by hatred, prejudice and rage,' called them radical and dangerous and unhinged. More extreme, more depraved, lacking in character and virtue.
"But the projection extended to policy as well. Trump declared the Democrats want to take away your judges, when that's literally what Mitch McConnell did to Obama by blocking Merrick Garland, then accused the Democrats of 'wanting to radicalize our judiciary' when he's made right-wing views the litmus test for judges, further politicizing the courts. He said the Democrats wanted to use the power of the law to punish their opponents -- right when he's making the DoJ investigate the investigators. And of course there was 'lock her up' as if to prove a point. Hillary Clinton also came under fire for refusing to respect a subpoena when the Trump White House has made refusing subpoenas their signature move. And get this, he framed the election as a, quote, verdict on whether we want to live in a country where people who lose an election refuse to concede. In the close of the 2016 election, Trump repeatedly refused to say if he'd concede if he lost. But the winner of that election still wants to campaign against a rigged system.
"He said, quote, 'my only interest is you' while he continues to profit from his businesses, rail on his watch, hitting Democrats on health care without a plan of his own yet but he did repeatedly hail VA Choice -- which was passed under Obama. Trump said he'd protect people with preexisting conditions when his DoJ is in court trying to throw out Obamacare, including pre-existing coverage. He said he longed for bipartisanship on issues like infrastructure, when he refused to deal with Democrats on these issues as long as they engage in congressional oversight.
"Let's face it, facts aren't the point of a Trump rally. The audience came for the show. And amidst all the pyrotechnics, one prediction he made last night could come true in 2020. The only thing these corrupt politician will understand, he said is an earthquake at the ballot box. We'll find out on election day whether that applies to Democrats or Republican. And that's your reality check."