BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Donald Trump was in Baltimore today to speak to the crowd at the National Guard Association conference at the Convention Center.
This was Trump’s first appearance in Baltimore as the Republican party’s official nominee, though it was not the first time he’s interjected himself into the city’s politics.
As he accepted the nomination at the Republican convention in Cleveland, he mentioned Baltimore’s murder rate. He also criticized State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby’s handling of charges in the death of Freddie Gray.
In Monday’s speech, he touched on ISIS, the military and he slammed Hillary Clinton’s comments on Friday that half of his supporters are “deplorables,” who are racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic and/or Islamaphobic.
He said he was shocked to hear Clinton “attack, slander, smear and demean these wonderful, amazing people who are supporting our campaign,” he said at Monday’s event.
“He probably won’t win here in the state of Maryland so it’s questionable as to how significant his presence might have been here,” one attendee told WJZ. “But I think he has the full support of the military, apparently, based on the reception he got in there.”
An OpinionWorks poll last week showed Trump down 29 points in the state, but he got two standing ovations from the crowd Monday afternoon.
About half of Trump’s time at the Convention Center was spent attacking his Democratic opponent, but he also remarked that, if elected, he would ramp up the military. He provided few specifics.
“I thought he had a lot to say about the military, and he has a lot of great thoughts on what he wants to do, but I don’t know how he’s going to do it,” one attendee said.
Security was tight both outside and inside the Convention Center, and police say there were no major issues despite the fact that Maryland for Trump and the People’s Power Assembly were outside, demonstrating opposing messages about the candidate.
After leaving Baltimore, Trump stopped at the Boulevard Diner in Dundalk where he had lunch with former Gov. Robert Ehrlich and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani.
The National Guard did offer Clinton a chance to speak at the convention, but she declined.