Donald Trump prepares to take the stage in Las Vegas for his first campaign rally since his felony conviction


Donald Trump’s political shift in the West continues Sunday with his first campaign rally since his historic conviction at his secret trial in New York last month.

The Las Vegas event follows a series of stops for the former president, including high-profile fundraisers in California and a campaign town hall in Arizona. On Saturday night, he attended a Las Vegas fundraiser hosted by construction equipment magnate Don Ahern, a longtime ally.

Trump’s western excursion comes at a critical time for his campaign. The former president is seeking to change the narrative of his overall election message after a seven-week criminal trial that resulted in his conviction on 34 counts related to a hush money scheme to pay a porn star before the 2016 elections.

During his visit to Las Vegas, the Trump campaign is expected to launch a new “Latin Americans for Trump” coalition, aiming to increase its reach among Hispanic voters ahead of the November election. The decision to launch the new program in Nevada is no coincidence.

A recent poll indicated a notable shift toward Trump among Hispanic voters, who have traditionally voted Democratic. In a state like Nevada, where Latino voters make up a significant portion of the electorate, siphoning off some of them could help turn Trump into the critical battleground state, and potentially the White House. Nevada has supported the Democratic presidential candidate in four straight elections – but Joe Biden won by just 2 points in 2020.

“Some of us think we might be better positioned in Nevada [this cycle] than we are even in Georgia,” a source close to Trump told CNN.

Trump campaign sources specifically cited the Covid-19 pandemic as a reason for their optimism. Nevada has been particularly hard hit by the pandemic, given its reliance on tourism and hospitality.

A senior adviser said there are also plans to try to work with the state’s powerful culinary workers union, which traditionally works closely with Democrats in a massive vote-mobilization operation designed by the late senator from Nevada. Harry Reid. Last month, the union failed to support several Democratic state lawmakers over their votes to remove Covid-era cleaning requirements placed on the casino industry.

Immigration, crime and the economy are expected to be the focus of Trump’s Las Vegas speech, top Trump advisers told CNN.

“Las Vegas has been hit very hard on many fronts, including housing costs, homeownership and rising food costs in this area. It’s a very big problem there,” one of the councilors said.

However, it remains unclear whether Trump will be able to maintain his message.

Before taking the stage Thursday at his Phoenix town hall hosted by the conservative group Turning Point Action, Trump denounced his moments of conviction, calling the verdict “rigged” and demanding that the courts overturn it.

“These appeals courts have to step in and make this right, or we won’t have a country anymore,” Trump told the crowd.

In a series of interviews last week, Trump refused to back down from his threats of retaliation against his political opponents if he won the presidency.

“Well, revenge takes time. “I will say that,” Trump said in an interview with psychologist Phil McGraw, better known as Dr. Phil. “And sometimes revenge can be justified. Phil, I have to be honest. You know, sometimes it’s possible.

However, Trump stayed somewhat on message during his remarks at the Phoenix town hall, speaking at length about immigration — an issue that Trump’s team sees as a major vulnerability for Biden ahead of November.

In a potential attempt to address this vulnerability, Biden last week announced an executive action giving him the authority to effectively close the U.S.-Mexico border to illegally entering asylum seekers when a daily threshold of crossings is exceeded. Trump repeatedly criticized Biden over the decision during his speech in Phoenix, calling it “bullshit” and promising to revoke the new asylum restrictions if he was re-elected.

In addition to a marquee presidential race, Nevada is also hosting what is expected to be one of the most competitive Senate elections in the country this year as Democratic incumbent Jacky Rosen seeks a second term. Trump has yet to formally endorse the increasingly ugly Republican Senate primary, and sources said it appears increasingly unlikely he will do so before Tuesday’s intraparty elections.

Trump was pressured to fire Sam Brown, a retired Army captain who was badly burned by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan. In April, Trump posted on social media that Brown and the former president were the “clear choices of Nevada Republican voters and donors.” But Trump loyalists have criticized Brown for his ties to mainstream Republicans — he was personally recruited to run by the Montana senator. Steve Daines, the head of the GOP Senate campaign arm. Instead, they encouraged the former president to support Jeff Gunter, Trump’s former ambassador to Iceland.

Gunter was scheduled to attend Saturday’s fundraiser with Trump, but Brown was not. Ahern, who hosted the event at his luxury boutique hotel, supported Brown when he unsuccessfully sought the GOP nomination for the state’s other Senate seat in 2022. But Ahern threw his support behind to Gunter this cycle and encouraged Trump to do the same.

Trump’s campaign, which has held outdoor rallies more frequently in recent months, is bracing for extreme heat Sunday as temperatures are expected to reach 104 degrees Fahrenheit.

In preparation, the Trump campaign is doubling the number of emergency medical personnel on hand for the rally, adding new misting fans and significantly increasing the amount of water available to attendees, according to a Trump campaign official.

The official said the campaign will provide more than 38,000 water bottles, 20 Power Breezer misting fans throughout the Sunset Park Las Vegas venue, at least one cooling tent with air conditioning and pop-up umbrella tents throughout the space . More metal detectors will also be added to help speed up security lines.

The new precautions came after 12 people were taken to the hospital after Trump’s campaign event in Phoenix due to heat-related illnesses, a Phoenix Fire Department spokesperson told CNN.

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