President Donald Trump was surrounded by medical staff after visiting shooting victims at an El Paso hospital Wednesday when he was reminded of another, much larger crowd.
"I was here three months ago and we made a speech," Trump says in a video obtained by El Paso’s KFOX14 News, apparently speaking to hospital staff. "What was the name of the arena? That place was packed."
The name of the arena is the El Paso County Coliseum, and Trump was there Feb. 11 — more like seven months ago — for a campaign rally that largely focused on his efforts to curb illegal immigration. (El Paso officials have said Trump still owes the city nearly $500,000 for the additional police and security services the rally required.)
But Wednesday’s hospital tour had nothing to do with that political rally. Trump was at the University Medical Center of El Paso to commend the doctors who treated the dozens of people injured when a gunman opened fire at a local Walmart on Saturday, killing 22 in an attack apparently provoked by his hatred for immigrants.
"That was some crowd," Trump says of his February rally in the video.
“I was front row,” one person says off-camera. “I was front row!”
“Oh, good!” Trump says, shaking his hand.
He also criticized “crazy” Beto O’Rourke, the El Paso native and 2020 presidential candidate, for organizing a counterprotest of the February MAGA rally. O’Rourke and Trump have been feuding since Saturday’s massacre, with O’Rourke calling Trump a racist and a white supremacist.
But even without O’Rourke’s help yesterday, angry protesters circled the hospital to bash Trump’s visit to a grieving, majority-Hispanic city. Trump posted a video of his visit to Twitter, showing people vying to take pictures of him or shake his hand.
Trump also visited a hospital in Dayton, Ohio, on Wednesday to see victims of the mass shooting that took place there early Sunday, leaving nine dead, including the shooter.
Cover: President Donald Trump speaks to the media as he visits the El Paso Regional Communications Center after meeting with people affected by the El Paso mass shooting, Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2019, in El Paso, Texas. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)