The Latest: Trump urges support for GOP House candidate

MOON TOWNSHIP, Pa. (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump’s rally for a Pennsylvania Republican running in a special House election (all times local):

8:30 p.m.

President Donald Trump is calling for harsh punishments for drug dealers, including potentially the death penalty.

Trump says countries like Singapore have fewer issues with drug addiction because of how much more harshly they punish their dealers.

Trump says, “the only way to solve the drug problem is through toughness.” Trump is making the case that a person can get the death penalty or life in prison for shooting a single person, but a drug dealer can kill thousands and spend little or no time in jail.

He says they’re “killing our kids, they’re killing our families, they’re killing our workers”

Trump is questioning whether the U.S. is ready for laws like Singapore’s or China’s. But he say he thinks it’s something worth thinking about.


7:50 p.m.

President Donald Trump says he’s decided on a slogan for his 2020 re-election campaign.

Trump says if he runs again — which is “almost positive” — that he can’t use his “Make America Great Again” tag line. That’s because he’ll already have spent years in office.

Trump says his new slogan will be “Keep America great!” with an exclamation point.


7:40 p.m.

President Donald Trump is bashing the press for its coverage of his decision to agree to direct talks with North Korea.

Trump says that, for the first two hours, his coverage was “unbelievable.”

But he says that, by the next day, the coverage had turned. Trump is discussing how he came to his decision to meet with Kim Jong Un at a rally aimed at boosting special election candidate Rick Saccone.

Trump’s first mention of Kim was met with boos and jeers from the crowd, but Trump told them that that they had to be “nice.”

Trump also says he thinks the North wants to have peace.

He say he thinks “it’s time.”

7:20 p.m.

President Donald Trump is kicking off a rally outside Pittsburgh by endorsing the Republican in the special election, Rick Saccone (suh-KOHN’).

Trump is urging attendees to head to the polls on Tuesday and jokes that if they agree, everyone can go home.

Trump is also touting his decision last week to slap tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

Trump says, “We’re saving the steel” and that both steel and aluminum are “back,” drawing cheers.

Polls show Saccone in a tight race with Democrat Conor Lamb in a district that Trump won by 20 percentage points.


6:30 p.m.

Republican Rick Saccone (suh-KOHN’) is embracing the politics of President Donald Trump as tightly as he can in the final days before a surprisingly competitive special congressional election in southwest Pennsylvania.

Saccone is telling several thousand supporters gathered for a rally with Trump that they must send “an ally of the president” because “we’ve got a country to save.”

He says the race is about “making America great again.” That’s the president’s well-known political slogan adoring hundreds of red hats at the rally.

Polls show Saccone in a tight race with Democrat Conor Lamb in a district that Trump won by 20 percentage points.

Saccone is mocking reporters he says have asked him whether Trump is still popular in Pennsylvania. The crowd roared its approval and began chanting “CNN sucks!”


6:20 p.m.

Republican Party Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel is stirring up Pennsylvania voters gathered for a rally with President Donald Trump days before a key special congressional election.

McDaniel credits Trump for “record unemployment” and bringing “3 million jobs back to America.”

She also says the president “recognizes that manufacturing and steel belong in America and in Pennsylvania.” That appears to be a nod to the president’s decision to impose tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum.

McDaniel didn’t specifically mention tariffs. As the RNC’s leader, she’s an extension of the White House political operation, but she also leads a party that has long championed free trade. Most Republicans on Capitol Hill oppose the Trump tariffs.

Both candidates in Pennsylvania’s 18th District, Democrat Conor Lamb and Republican Rick Saccone (suh-KOHN’), have endorsed the tariffs.


12:30 p.m.

President Donald Trump is lending the weight of the White House to a congressional candidate who hopes to keep a Pittsburgh-area House seat in Republican hands.

Trump plans a rally in Moon Township, Pennsylvania, on Saturday night for Rick Saccone (suh-KOHN’), a state representative in a tight race against Conor Lamb, a former Marine and federal prosecutor who’s never run for office before.

The election is Tuesday.

Trump easily won the district in the 2016 presidential race. And the former eight-term incumbent, Tim Murphy, never had a close election, and didn’t even have a Democratic challenger in his last two elections.

Murphy quit last fall after his hometown newspaper reported he had suggested a mistress get an abortion when they thought she might be pregnant.

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