What Donald Trump said about Minnesota during his Duluth rally

The president spoke to a packed house at the Amsoil Arena in Duluth.
Publish date:

President Donald Trump's first appearance in Minnesota since his 2016 election saw him speak to a big crowd at the 8,500-capacity Amsoil Arena in Duluth.

There were many left outside who weren't able to get tickets to the event but still made it to Duluth to show their support for the 45th President of the United States.

President Trump told the crowd inside that the "fake news" wouldn't report that...

Predictably considering his national audience, Trump's hour-long speech mostly touched upon his national and international talking points, having spoken more specifically about the mining industry in the Northland and Iron Range at an earlier roundtable.

As such, here are the moments from the rally most particular to Minnesota.

He'll rescind mining protection for Superior National Forest

He had hinted at it at the earlier roundtable, but at the rally Trump announced: "We will soon be taking the first steps to rescind the federal withdrawal in Superior National Forest and restore mineral exploration."

The Obama-era federal withdrawal application by the U.S. Forest Service would take 234,000 acres of Superior National Forest out of consideration for future mining projects.

The withdrawal is opposed by many on the Iron Range and those in the copper-nickel mining industry, who say it'll cost jobs and investment.

It is backed however by conservationists seeking to preserve the natural wilderness of Superior National Forest and the Boundary Waters.

Trump says "we will do it carefully," regarding exploration, and said if it's not careful then perhaps it won't go ahead.

It was a significant announcement for the Northland, though perhaps not a surprising giveaway considering Republicans see the 8th Congressional District as a prime pickup opportunity in the November mid-terms.

Today's Top Stories

– What President Trump said during the Duluth roundtable.

– Trump fans struggle in the heat in Duluth skyways.

Praises Minnesota's pioneers, thinks he'll win state in 2020

Trump thinks that "one more visit" to Minnesota would have won him the state in 2016, which Hillary Clinton narrowly won ("so close," he said.)

And he's bullish about his prospects in 2020, repeating that he believes he'll carry the state in two years' time.

"We are going to win so much, we are going to win win win," he said.

He then had kind words for the early immigrant settlers of Minnesota.

"Your great state was pioneered by men and women who braved the wilderness and the winters to build a better life for themselves and their incredible families," he said.

"They didn't have a lot of money, they didn't have a lot of luxury, but they had grit and they had faith and they had courage and they had each other, right?"

"Together we are renewing the miracle of the great American Midwest," he added.

He praised Pete Stauber

Stauber is the GOP candidate for the fiercely-contested 8th Congressional District, which is suddenly a toss-up after long-serving DFL Rep. Rick Nolan announced he won't run for re-election.

Step forward Stauber, an ex-cop and hockey player who is the GOP endorsed candidate for the district. Trump brought him up on stage, and then let him speak to the crowd to cheers from those in attendance.

"I'm Pete Stauber and I'm running because, like President Trump, I love this country, I love our freedoms and I love our constitution," Stauber told the crowd, after welcoming Trump to the home of the UMD Bulldogs.

"Pete is a great guy, you've got to get him a victory," Trump said. "We need him."

Follow us: Read all of our stories on Flipboard.

But no shout-outs to Erik Paulsen, Jeff Johnson

Trump praised Reps. Jason Lewis and Tom Emmer, who were in attendance, as well as State Sen. Karin Housley, who will challenge Sen. Tina Smith for her U.S. Senate seat this coming November.

But there was no shout-out to 3rd District Rep. Erik Paulsen, who faces a severely tough test to hold on to his seat this November and has been at pains to distance himself from the president in recent weeks.

Paulsen chose to be in D.C., working to rescind the unpopular immigrant child separation policy – that Trump himself signed an order ending on Wednesday anyway.

More intriguingly for the Minnesota governor race, Trump called out Michelle Fischbach, the current Lieutenant Governor of Minnesota who is the running mate of gubernatorial candidate Tim Pawlenty.

Pawlenty, who has been critical of Trump in the past, also chose not to attend, but who was in attendance was his GOP primary rival Jeff Johnson, who Trump did not mention during his speech.

Next Up