At a campaign rally in Arizona on Monday, a more energetic, bombastic and off-script President Trump railed against Dr. Fauci, the political correctness of not calling women “suburban housewives,” and CNN for frequently covering news about the Covid-19 pandemic, as he repeatedly incited jeers from the crowd of “lock him up” directed at Joe Biden.
During the rally—which was held in Prescott, Arizona—Trump claimed that all CNN talks about is “covid, covid, covid” all the time to try to “talk everybody out of voting,” a baseless accusation that marks an escalation from previous attacks against the media.
“People aren’t buying it,” Trump boomed, before calling CNN reporters “dumb bastards.”
Trump appeared to criticize Biden for being willing to listen to Fauci, prompting boos toward the nation’s top infectious disease official and chants of “lock him up” directed at the Democratic nominee: “Biden wants to listen to Dr. Fauci,” Trump jeered.
As he frequently went off script, Trump bemoaned the fact the phrase “suburban housewife” had fallen out of style and was no longer politically correct, asking the crowd: “Is there one woman here who minds being called, if you’re married at least, a suburban housewife?”
Minutes before the rally, Trump called a reporter a “criminal” for not doing enough reporting on the allegations levied at Hunter Biden.
When asked about the safety of holding large rallies during a pandemic, Trump has frequently justified the decision by claiming most of his supporters wear masks during the events. But few supporters appeared to be wearing a face covering during the rally in Arizona on Monday.
Trump has ramped up his attacks on Fauci in recent days, after the disease expert criticized his campaign for taking his comments out of context in a campaign ad. During a conference call on Monday with reporters, Trump called Fauci a “disaster.” “He’s been here for 500 years,” Trump said. “People are tired of hearing Fauci and all these idiots.”
The Biden campaign released a statement on Monday slamming Trump for undermining Fauci and calling the president’s criticism of him for listening to scientists “a badge of honor.”