Two supporters of President Donald Trump carried a 100-year old World War II veteran to his seat while onlookers chanted “U-S-A” before Trump’s re-election rally in Phoenix on Wednesday night.
The now-viral video, which has more than 5 million views on Twitter, shows two men carrying the 100-year old veteran Ervin Julian down the steps of the arena at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
— Kari Lake (@KariLakeFox10) February 19, 2020
Julian is a Navy veteran of World War II and a proud Trump supporter, according to communications director for Trump’s reelection campaign, Tim Murtaugh, who added that it was “such an honor to have him in attendance,” the Arizona Republic reported.
“I don’t know if he knows it but he’s, right now, the hottest celebrity in the world,” Trump said about the veteran at the beginning of his speech. “He might even be hotter than Trump right now, I have to say.”
“I asked my son Don to get a couple of hats and get some things and give them to Ervin right now and I want to thank you. Really, that’s a great honor and thank you for the great job you’ve done, an American patriot, thank you very much,” Trump said.
The rally, the first of three in three consecutive days, had 67,000 tickets sold, according to Brad Parscale, Trump’s 2020 campaign manager. The next stops include Colorado Springs on Thursday and Las Vegas on Friday, Fox News reported.
Trump supporters were so eager to see the president that they had started to camp out for the rally more than 24 hours before it began so they could gain entrance into the Coliseum. The parking lot was reportedly full by 3:30 p.m. Tuesday afternoon. Trump didn’t begin his speech until about 7:30 p.m. the next day.
Before Trump arrived, Rep. Debbie Lesko, a Republican from Arizona’s 8th District, took the podium to address the attendees.
“They are trying to take away your vote through an impeachment. They are trying to take away your guns. They are trying to take away your money with higher taxes. They’re trying to take away your health insurance. And they’re even trying to take away the lives of unborn babies,” Lesko said to the crowd.
Later in his speech, Trump called out the Democratic presidential candidates, who he said he “doesn’t care” who gets the Democratic nomination because, “We’re going to win.”
He also briefly touched on impeachment, saying, “We are in the midst of the great American comeback more today than ever before. And after three years, a very unfair and ridiculous witch hunts and partisan Democrat crusade, it was the radicals Left’s pathetic attempts to nullify your ballot, poison our democracy and overthrow our entire system of government. But, guess what, they failed and our poll numbers are higher today than they’ve ever been before.”
Arizona has 8,000 living World War II veterans, according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
Although the last Democrat to win Arizona in a presidential election was Bill Clinton in 1996, the Democrats believe they can possibly flip it in 2020.