on Saturday disputed the 2020 presidential election results and repeated many of the baseless claims of voter fraud he leveled at his last campaign-style rally nearly six months ago.
Mr. Trump’s previous rally, on Jan. 6, preceded a riot in the U.S. Capitol in which pro-Trump supporters attempted to stop then-Vice President
and a bipartisan majority of Congress from certifying President
The nation has continued to grapple with both political and legal repercussions of that day. House Democrats plan a select committee to investigate the events that led to the attack; Senate Republicans blocked the formation of a bipartisan, independent commission, which Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) said was an unnecessary political exercise that Democrats would weaponize against Republican candidates.
Meanwhile, more than 500 Americans have been arrested and charged with crimes in connection to the violence, including at least 100 accused of assaulting police.
Candidates Endorsed by Trump
- Gov. Greg Abbott, Texas
- Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Arkansas
- Henry McMaster, South Carolina
- Glenn Youngkin, Virginia
- Sen. John Boozman, Arkansas
- Rep. Mo Brooks, Alabama
- Sen. Mike Crapo, Idaho
- Sen. Ron Johnson, Wisconsin
- Jerry Moran, Kansas
- Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky
- Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida
- Sen. Tim Scott, South Carolina
- Kelly Tshibaka, Alaska
For U.S. House
- Mike Carey, Ohio
- Rep. Virginia Foxx, North Carolina
- Julia Letlow, Louisiana
- Max Miller, Ohio
- Susan Wright, Texas
For other positions
- Frank Eathorne, Wyoming Republican Party chairman
- Vito Fossella, Staten Island borough president
- Tim Griffin, Arkansas attorney general
- Jody Hice, Georgia secretary of state
- Drew McKissick, South Carolina Republican Party chairman
- Bob Paduchik, Ohio Republican Party chairman
- Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, Texas lieutenant governor
- David Shafer, Georgia Republican Party chairman
- Wilton Simpson, Florida agriculture commissioner
Mr. Trump didn’t mention the attack during his rally, which drew thousands of supporters to the Lorain County fairgrounds, about 60 miles southwest of Cleveland. Instead, the former president focused his 90-minute speech on events before—and after—the riot.
“We had a massive victory,” Mr. Trump said, insisting he had won an election that vote tallies, multiple recounts and subsequent court challenges show he lost.
Mr. Trump also criticized the Biden administration for attempting to unwind many of his policies. Surrounded by blue “Save America” banners, the former president said crime rates, illegal immigration and drug use all would be lower if he were still in office.
Amid Mr. Trump’s portrayal of a declining America, he praised northeastern Ohio for the beautiful lawns and gorgeous barns he said he saw on his drive from the airport.
Mr. Trump visited the Cleveland area to support Max Miller, a former aide who has launched a primary campaign against a fellow Republican, U.S. Rep. Anthony Gonzales. A former Ohio State University football star, Mr. Gonzales voted with Mr. Trump on issues more than 85% of the time, according to FiveThirtyEight. But he drew the ire of the former president after voting in January to impeach him on a charge that he incited the attack on the Capitol. A bipartisan majority in the Democratic-controlled House supported the charge, but Mr. Trump was acquitted in the Republican-controlled Senate.
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The former president held a private fundraiser for Mr. Miller before the rally and invited the candidate to share the rally stage during his speech. Mr. Miller also spoke to the rally crowd before Mr. Trump was introduced.
Other speakers also criticized the election results.
Douglas Frank, a math teacher from Cincinnati, showed the crowd a series of fever charts that he said suggested the election was stolen.
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene
(R., Ga.) repeatedly told the crowd that the 2020 election had been stolen. She never mentioned Mr. Miller.
Mr. Trump’s predecessors in the White House—including those who also lost re-election bids—mostly avoided public political activity in the first year after leaving the West Wing. But the 75-year-old Republican has already made more than two-dozen endorsements in races for Congress, state Republican chairs and even to support a contender for Staten Island, N.Y., borough president.
Mr. Trump, who remains banned from posting on Facebook and
also has hosted more than a dozen journalists at his South Florida home in recent months for cable television, radio and book interviews.
The publicity tour and surge of endorsements have sparked questions about whether Mr. Trump will run again for the White House in 2024. The former reality-TV star has helped fuel that speculation by responding to those queries with cliffhangers instead of direct answers.
“We won the election twice,” Mr. Trump said Saturday. “And it’s possible that we’ll have to win it a third time.”
Corrections & Amplifications
is a U.S. representative for North Carolina. An earlier version of this article incorrectly said she was a representative for Virginia. (Corrected on June 26)
Write to Michael C. Bender at Mike.Bender@wsj.com
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Source: WSJ – US News