HERSHEY, PA. — A sea of red hats filled the Giant Center when around 11,000 supporters packed the arena — and even more watched on a monitor outside — in Hershey on Dec. 10 during President Donald Trump’s 2020 campaign rally visit.
Thousands lined up outside the arena the morning of the rally with hopes of seeing the president and Vice President Mike Pence, who was on a bus tour across the state. According to its website, the Giant Center has 10,500 seats. The arena reached capacity shortly after 6 p.m. according to Sarah Gisriel of ABC27 News.
Trump’s visit to the commonwealth occurred on the same day US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced two articles of impeachment against the president.
“They’re impeaching me. You know why?” Trump asked. “Because they want to win an election and that’s the only way they can do it.”
The president spoke for over an hour on a plethora of subjects ranging from interference in the 2016 election to his Democratic 2020 competition.
An animated Trump boasted a new trade deal with Mexico and Canada, USMCA, which replaces NAFTA, along with the current state of the economy.
“We’ve created 7 million new jobs since the election,” Trump said. “Right here in Pennsylvania, we’ve created 160,000 brand new, beautiful jobs.”
Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate has also reached an all-time low, according to Trump.
Trump also took aim to the media, calling them “fake news” to which the attendees raucously booed members of the press who were gathered in the center of the main floor.
Each time Trump mentioned “Crooked Hillary," “the Washington Establishment,” the media or any of his Democratic 2020 competitors, the crowd passionately booed and made the “thumbs-down” sign. Meanwhile, they cheered and shot their thumbs up at the mention of law enforcement, the military and the progress Trump has made.
Pence addresses Hershey crowd
Prior to Trump’s nearly 75-minute address, Vice President Pence spoke to the Chocolate Town crowd.
“Here in Pennsylvania, you believed we could be strong again. You believed we could be prosperous again,” Pence said. “Pennsylvania said yes to President Donald Trump in 2016 and I know Pennsylvania’s going to say yes to four more years.”
Chants of “four more years” reverberated throughout the Giant Center.
Pennsylvania’s 20 Electoral College votes are “critical” for both the Democratic and Republican candidates in 2020, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Pence spoke about securing funds for America’s military, appointing “principled conservatives” to federal courts at every level and emphasized Trump’s commitment to protecting the Second Amendment and “the sanctity of life.” The last point drew some of the night’s biggest cheers.
Pence also celebrated the USMCA trade agreement and the “booming economy.” Unemployment is at a 50-year low, according to the vice president.
“There is only one way to describe the last three years,” Pence said. “It’s been amazing.”
The vice president also addressed the articles of impeachment, calling them, “flimsy, pathetic and ridiculous.”
Both Trump and Pence said they were proud of the killing of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi without any American casualties.
“Thanks to the strength and courage of our warriors, and they’re great warriors, the bloodthirsty savage known as Al Baghdadi is now dead,” Trump said.
Chants of “U-S-A” broke out among the crowd members.
Protestors interrupt rally, Trump boasts accomplishments
Protestors also attended the rally and security removed at least two during the rally, including one woman holding a sign that said, “Grabbing power back.” Trump stopped his address and said, “Get her out.”
Security led the woman out of the arena as the crowd jeered.
“We don’t want to be politically correct,” he said as she was escorted out.
Outside the arena, protestors and supporters gathered with signs, as seen in a video posted to Gisriel's Twitter.
Trump continued speaking after the interruption, referring to major events and accomplishments of his presidency.
“Republicans have never been as united as they are now,” Trump said.
Later in the evening, Trump brought out local republican leaders including United States Congressmen Rep. Lloyd Smucker and Rep. Scott Perry before returning to his speech.
“Finally, after everything we do, we are putting America first,” the president said.
“There’s a spirit for what we’re doing. We’re healing our country. We’re making America great again,” Trump said before exiting to The Rolling Stones’ “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” around 9 p.m.