Thousands from The Sunflower State attended the president’s “Make America Great Again” rally at the Kansas Expocentre.
More than 45,000 people made a request for tickets to the MAGA tour rally in Topeka. About half of the crowd who joined the line were turned away at the door because the venue was filled to its capacity. A large projector was set up in the parking lot which allowed Kansans to show their support even in the cold rain.
President Trump flew from Washington DC to Topeka on Saturday morning, the same day of the Senate confirmation vote. Air Force One landed at Forbes Field Airport around 5:00 p.m., an hour before the rally. Doors opened to the public at 2:00 p.m. as ‘Pro Trumpers’ surrounded the Expocentre.
Politicians such as Rep. Kevin Yoder, Rep. Lynn Jenkins and Lt. Gov. Tracy Mann were scheduled to appear but had previous engagements.
This specific MAGA rally soon followed one of the largest political victories for the Grand Old Party (GOP). Judge Brett Kavanaugh was officially confirmed by the Senate to the Supreme Court. As of Saturday, Oct. 6, there have been seven background investigations held by the FBI against Kavanaugh and no evidence of sexual misconduct was found. At the rally, Trump spoke about Kavanaugh saying, “I am thrilled to be with you on this historic day, I stand before you on the heels of an enormous victory for our nation, for our people and our beloved constitution.”
Trump held the rally in Kansas in hopes of bolstering the campaigns of Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who is running for governor, and the GOP candidate for Kansas’s 2nd congressional district, Steve Watkins.
Kobach was endorsed by Trump and given a chance to speak to the large crowd of potential GOP voters. Kobach spoke about the importance of stopping illegal immigration, removal of sanctuary cities in Kansas, protection against voter fraud and lowering the state and property taxes. Kobach has experience as the Chair of the Kansas Republican Party and 31st Secretary of State.
Watkins is seeking to replace current 2nd district of congress incumbent, Lynn Jenkins. Jenkins is retiring and the endorsement of Trump could be what is needed to boost Watkins to victory this November. Watkins spoke soon after Kobach. He spoke on similar topics as Kobach: Increasing number of jobs, border security and “appointing pro-constitutional judges to the bench”.
Brad Parscale, President Trump’s 2020 campaign manager, is a Shawnee Heights alumni and Downtown Topeka native. He said it was great to be back in his hometown where he played SCABA baseball and has maintained lasting friendships throughout Kansas.
President Trump thanked his supporters and the people who have helped him during his presidency. Trump spoke about the undeniable economic success the US has experienced.
“The GDP (or Gross Domestic Product) Rate (4.2 percent) is higher than the Unemployment Rate (3.9 percent) for the first time in over 100 years,” said Trump.
It has been over a decade since a President has made an appearance in Topeka. President George W. Bush came to the capitol city the day before the fall midterm election day to support Rep. Jim Ryun in his failed re-election bid.
Samantha Ralston, a sophomore music performance major was one of many students excited about the Presidents visit.
“I was excited! It’s not everyday the president comes to Topeka,” said Ralston.
President Trump has made plans to help campaign for his fellow congressman before beginning his official 2020 presidential campaign.