Rally for thousands of diehard advocates held on same day Robert Mueller reportedly convened grand jury as part of investigation into alleged collusion
Donald Trump rallied thousands of diehard supporters against the investigation into his election campaigns alleged collusion with Russia, cautioning on Thursday: Theyre trying to cheat you out of the leadership that you want with a fake story.
In what might be seen as a bid to weaponise his populist base, the US president sought to discredit the allegations as a total fabrication on the same day it was reported that special advise Robert Mueller has convened a grand jury in Washington, a sign that his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 US election is escalating.
Most people know there were no Russians in our campaign; there never were, Trump told a rally in Huntington, West Virginia, a coal country stronghold where Trump beat Democrat Hillary Clinton by 42 percentage points. We didnt win because of Russia. We won because of you.
The crowd, many with Make America great again hats or signs, erupted in vociferous cheers. Trump continued: We won because we wholly outworked the other side. We won because of millions of patriotic Americans voted to take back their country.
The president asked mockingly: Have you assured any Russians in West Virginia or Ohio or Pennsylvania? Are there any Russians here tonight, any Russians? They cant beat us at the voting kiosks so theyre trying to cheat you out of the future and the future that you want. Theyre trying to cheat you out of the leadership that you want with a fake narrative that is demeaning to all of us and most importantly demeaning to our country and demeaning to our constitution.
Trumps rhetoric at a 9,000 -person capacity arena on Thursday echoed rallies during the election campaign where he claimed the system was rigged against him. This time he appeared to be scattering seeds of doubts concerning the investigations by Mueller and two congressional committees into whether there was collusion between Russia and Trumps presidential campaign.
I just hope the final determination is a truly honest one which is what the millions of people who gave us our big win in November deserve and what all Americans who want a better future wishing and deserve, the president added ominously. Democrat lawmakers will have to decide. They can continue their obsession with the Russian hoax or they can serve the interests of the American people. Try winning at the voter kiosk. Not going to be easy, but thats the way youre supposed to do it.
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