Trump rallies in Dubuque two days before Election Day

President Trump’s campaign made a stop in Dubuque, Iowa just days before the 2020 presidential election with Illinois, Wisconsin, and Iowa voters present.


Ryan Adams

President Donald Trump walks around the stage to music during a “Make America Great Again” rally held at the Dubuque Regional Airport on Sunday, November 1, 2020. With two days before Election Day, this is President Trump’s second stop to Iowa in the past few weeks.

Brian Grace and Alexandra Skores

President Trump made a final pitch to voters in Dubuque two days before Election Day, where several thousand voters from Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, and elsewhere packed the stands in 30-degree weather and 17 mph winds.

Midwestern voters within the stands and staging area at the Dubuque Regional Airport listened in to the president discuss his plans for reelection, while commenting on the pandemic and the possibility of a vaccine.

The Dubuque Make America Great Again rally was scheduled last week after Joe Biden announced he was having a rally in Des Moines on Friday. Trump’s campaign played a video that cut together clips of Biden’s gaffes and instances where his speech trailed off.

“The guy has no clue,” Trump said. “You know it, I know it. He’s not a nice guy. If he was, I wouldn’t talk this way.”

Crowds were standing shoulder-to-shoulder with less than half wearing a mask. Trump pointed out during the rally that Gov. Kim Reynolds was wearing a mask while sitting in the crowd of people.

He said a vaccine for the coronavirus would be available in a matter of weeks and that elderly citizens would be the first to receive them.

“We will mass distribute the vaccine in just a few short weeks and we will quickly eradicate the virus,” Trump said. “We just want to get back to normal.”

He said under his leadership the country’s economy was growing at a rate faster than the previous administration until the pandemic hit the U.S.

Trump also commented on Biden’s stance to end the American oil industry claiming it as a “death sentence on ethanol.” Biden’s climate plan calls for the U.S. reaching net-zero carbon emissions over the next 50 years.

“We had the greatest economy in the history of our country and then we got hit by the China plague, which we’re not going to forget,” Trump said. “So we closed it up, we closed it up, and then we opened it up and I’ll tell you we saved 2 million lives…but what happened, there shouldn’t have been one life. We can never forget what China did to us.”

A Des Moines Register/Mediacom Iowa Poll released Saturday put Trump ahead by seven points in the Hawkeye State, with 48 percent of support to Biden’s 41 percent. It was the best poll for Trump in weeks, with other recent polls in Iowa placing the candidates within only a few percentage points.

The poll, conducted by Selzer & Co., surveyed 814 likely voters and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.

Trump discussed border security and his administration bringing “the most secure border in American history.”

“As you probably know, the wall is almost complete — we did 412 miles, we are doing approximately 10 miles a week and it is done to the highest standard to what border patrol desired,” Trump said.

On Oct. 14, Trump rallied in Des Moines stating his term would greatly benefit Iowa agriculture. On Sunday, he discussed the $28 billion national farm bailout package that compensated farmers for lost income due to volatile markets during trade negotiations.

Ahead of the rally, the Iowa Democratic Party held a press conference where Democratic Party Chair Mark Smith discussed “Trump and the Republicans’ complete disregard for public health.”

“From their failure to handle the COVID-19 pandemic to shelving badly needed coronavirus relief for another chance to overturn our nation’s health-care system, Republicans are ignoring the present threat of the virus to roll back the clock on health care for millions of Americans,” Smith said. “More than 127,000 Iowans have been affected. The virus is spreading over our state at one of the highest rates in the country.”

Smith commented on Trump’s rallies which the president claimed on Sunday to have brought in thousands of people, similar to the crowd that was in Dubuque on Sunday.

“To make matters worse, Republicans like Senator Joni Ernst are exacerbating the public health crisis by prioritizing a Supreme Court vote that could repeal the Affordable Care Act over badly needed comprehensive COVID relief legislation,” Smith said.

According to the Iowa COVID-19 positive case analysis, as of Sunday evening Iowa is seeing a 14.1 percent positive case analysis of the past 14-day average. Hospitalizations in the state have been increasing steadily since mid-October, and are now at a record-high of 718.

Trump invited a few Republican officials on stage including, Reynolds, Sens. Chuck Grassley, and Joni Ernst, and Iowa GOP Chair Jeff Kauffmann. Republican candidate in Iowa’s 1st Congressional District Ashley Hinson also voiced her support for the president’s reelection. The president’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, was also in attendance.

“There’s a lot of good genes in this state,” Trump told the crowd on Sunday.

Kolton Buehler, who will turn 18 on Election Day drove seven hours from Olathe, Kansas to see Trump at the rally. He said he felt Trump provided him hope for what the future of the country could look like, citing decreases in unemployment rates among Black Americans.

“I’m here because I feel like for the African American community a lot of trust has been misplaced; a lot of issues have been mishandled,” said Buehler, speaking as a Black man. “Also, I mean, he’s a very upfront guy, there’s no shady stuff going on in the background. He’s very transparent…I like to know what’s going on with my vote and with my taxes.”

Twenty-year-old Loras College student Lauren Diiulio from Bettendorf said prior to Trump’s arrival to the rally she was passionate about the pro-life movement and planned on working as pregnancy counselor in the future.

“It’s just something that I think is very important and I think it’s our country’s greatest evil and I hope to hear from Trump that they’re going to defund Planned Parenthood and continue to work toward ending abortion,” Diiulio said.

Genevieve Reed, an 18-year-old from Cedar Rapids who also attends Loras College said she was looking forward to hearing more on Trump’s domestic and foreign policy, as well as the future of abortion legislation.

“I’m hoping that he’ll try to put a lot of his effort into trying to reverse Roe V. Wade,” Reed said.