Trump at Temple: Misrepresentation, disinformation and a call to vote GOP in November

Donald Trump speaks

It was over 100 heat index for Donald Trump’s rally on June 22 at the Liacouras Center at Temple University, but Trump was cool and relaxed as he tried to lure voters in the Democratic enclave in Philadelphia, focusing hard on Black voters.

It was Trump’s fourth appearance in Pennsylvania this year and his second in Philadelphia, but his first speech in Philadelphia in any of his runs for president. In February, Trump spoke to SneakerCon at the Pennsylvania Convention Center to promote his new line of gold $400 Trump-branded sneakers, but it wasn’t a speech. At Temple, Trump spoke for nearly two hours on a myriad of issues, including the economy, immigration, crime, climate change, abortion and LGBTQ+ issues. He repeatedly invoked attacks on President Joe Biden, alternately calling him “crooked” and “sleepy” and claiming Biden had destroyed the country, was directed by “Marxists” and “Communists” in the White House and had allowed “millions of violent criminals” into the U.S. due to “an open border.”

The Temple University campus newspaper, Temple News, published its own fact-check on June 25 on Twitter/X, identifying 41 false claims made by the former president in his speech.

Trump began his speech with a lie about the 2020 election and even the 2016 election. Trump said, “I went to school in Philadelphia. I like it. And we won it twice in actuality, and we won it all the times in the primaries. We had great success here.”

In 2020, Trump lost both Philadelphia County and Pennsylvania. In 2016, he lost Philadelphia County to Hillary Clinton, but won the state by a mere 44,292 votes and a half a percentage point — enough to secure the state for the Electoral College.

Crime, Migrant Criminals, Larry Krasner

Only three minutes into his speech, Trump was misrepresenting crime in Philadelphia. He said, “Few communities have suffered more under the Biden regime than Philadelphia. Under ‘Crooked Joe,’ the City of Brotherly Love is being ravaged by bloodshed and crime….Murders in Philadelphia reached their highest level in six decades. Retail theft in Philly, I spent so much time here, is up 135% since I left office.”

He then claimed you cannot buy soap or toothpaste in the city: “The convenience stores are closing down left and right. The pharmacies have to lock up the soap. There’s soap. You want to buy a little bar of soap. You got to go through a big deal, open up the glass, open up the steel. They can’t keep a bar of soap. People walk in. They just take it. You can’t buy toothpaste. You can’t buy a toothbrush. You want a toothbrush, it takes you 45 minutes.”

Trump went on to attack District Attorney Larry Krasner, saying, “We’re going to stand up to the out of control, [billionaire Jewish businessman and philanthropist George] Soros-backed DAs like Philadelphia’s despicable Marxist prosecutor, Larry Krasner. How did he get in? Krasner has the blood of countless men, women, children on his hands, including thousands of African-American citizens, because he refuses to prosecute people. They don’t refuse to prosecute me. I got more prosecutions than any human being. I’ve got more than the great Alphonse Capone. You ever hear of Scarface? Oh, my parents. My parents are looking down, ‘How did this happen to my son?’ You know how it happened? I won an election that I wasn’t supposed to win.”

Trump did not win the 2020 election and some of the legal cases he faces are due to criminal efforts to overturn that election after he lost.

Krasner was elected twice in a landslide. Crime is down markedly in Philadelphia and nationally. Trump went into a litany of recent well-publicized crimes perpetrated by migrants.

“When I return to the White House, we will stop the plunder, rape, slaughter and destruction of our American suburbs, cities and towns. That’s what’s happening. It’s getting worse. It’s getting worse. Worse and worse and worse by the day. We will shut down deadly sanctuary cities.”

Philadelphia is a sanctuary city.

Trump also said Biden is responsible for human trafficking. “Human trafficking in women. And there’s more of it going on right now than anytime in the history of the world. And it’s taken place during this horrible, pathetic president’s time in office.”

Trump said he will “take crime down to zero.”

Eisenhower’s “Operation Wetback,” Redux

Trump continually made a link between migrants and jobs for Black and Latino workers. He said, “Joe Biden’s open border has also been a disaster for our great African American and Hispanic American population. So what’s happening when millions of people flow over? The people that are most hurt are, number one, the African Americans in this country. Have they taken your job yet, sir?”

Trump said, “I will shift massive portions of federal law enforcement to immigration enforcement. And on day one, we will begin the largest domestic deportation operation in American history. We have no choice. We have no choice. You know who had the largest? General Dwight D. Eisenhower when he was president. Good general, good president. Very much responsible for the interstate highway system. But he was tremendous on not wanting people to illegally flow into our country. He had the strongest deportation program.” 

Trump said, “Ours will unfortunately have to be much stronger than his because he didn’t have 20 million people walk in. And these are people out of the jails and out of the mental institutions. He didn’t have that. He had people walk in, but they weren’t the people that we’re getting. And you know what? ….We’re like a dumping ground for the rest of the world. And it’s going to stop on January 20th at a level that you haven’t seen before.”

Trump said that “the lowest level of illegal immigration in the history of our country, recorded history” was his last week in office.

Assault on religion

Trump also said that President Biden was “jailing Christians,” a claim he has made before, although as the executive branch of government the president has no authority to unilaterally jail anyone. Also, Biden is himself a devout Catholic who attends Mass weekly.

Trump told a faith group on Saturday prior to the Temple rally that their faith will not be safe if Biden is re-elected, and that “they want to arrest you” if you state your allegiance to “God in Heaven.”

“If you say that, they want to arrest you,” he said.

“If Joe Biden gets back in, Christianity will not be safe,” Trump said. “In a nation with no borders, no laws, no freedom, no future. Not going to be safe. You’re not going to be safe as a person, and your religion certainly will be, I think, in tatters.”

Biden has celebrated several different religions at the White House and has hosted religious leaders from the Christian, Jewish, Muslim and Hindu religions.

Inflation, economy

Trump focused on the economy, claiming under Biden inflation is the “worst inflation the country has ever seen.” He says he can’t afford to buy bacon, so he doesn’t buy it anymore. “Even I won’t buy bacon anymore. It’s too expensive. I said, ‘I’d love to have some lovely bacon, Darling.’ And she said, ‘No, I’m sorry. It’s too expensive.’”

Trump also said gas was down to $1.87 and under when he left office, leaving out the fact that fewer people were driving because the entire country was shut down due to the pandemic. He said the cost of most things “have gone up 100%” under Biden. “You can’t afford to eat.”

Trump also claimed “Biden’s inflation, price hikes and energy destruction have cost the average American family an astounding $28,000. 28,000. That’s a lot of money.”

Biden’s climate initiatives

Trump also spent about ten minutes on his interpretation of Biden’s climate-related programs which Trump called “all of this Green New Scam stuff.” He spoke at length about his complaints over water restrictors and also windmills for wind energy. He added a new favorite topic, EV cars and batteries, which he says have to be pulled in a wagon.

Trump said, “I will repeal every disastrous Biden regulation. Cancel Crooked Joe’s insane electric vehicle mandate and we will ‘Drill, baby drill.’ Going to get your energy way down. The Pennsylvania oil and gas industries will boom like never before.” 

Trump spoke for ten minutes about cars, trucks and Biden’s attempts to control fuel emissions and promote electric vehicles. He attacked the president of the United Auto Workers union, Shawn Fain, who has endorsed Biden. Trump asserted that Biden is surrounded by young Marxists in the Oval Office who are defining his policy.

Trump said, “These people are sick, and it’s Biden and it’s the communists that’s around the Resolute Desk [in the Oval Office]. I’m telling you, it’s Biden and the communists.”

Black Voters

Throughout his speech, Trump spoke directly to Black and brown voters, touting his record with outreach to the Black and Hispanic communities during his presidency.

“We will also work to lift up Black, Hispanic and other communities in Philadelphia and all across the United States,” he said. “And by the way, I have the best polling numbers that any president has had, they said in 75 years. I think it’s longer with Black and with Hispanic voters. We have the best polling numbers.”

According to the Temple News fact check, “The former president still lags behind in polling numbers for Black voters. According to a May 2024 poll by the Pew Research Center, 77% of Black voters would vote for Biden instead of Trump.”

Temple News also noted, “While a March poll by the New York Times and Siena College revealed Trump has begun to pull ahead of Biden among Hispanic voters, with 46% favoring the former president, his polling figures are far from the best in the past 75 years. In 2020, Biden amassed 59% of Hispanic votes.” 

Senate Race

Trump introduced Republican Senate candidate David McCormick, who spoke briefly. He touted McCormick’s military record and his support for the Second Amendment. He said McCormick would be an “activist” for gun owners and for the Second Amendment.

Trump also attacked Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey, who McCormick is challenging. 

He said, “Bob Casey. Look, I mean, he doesn’t do anything. He’s a stiff. He doesn’t do anything. And Bob Casey votes for Sleepy Joe 98% of the time. 98.”

Trump said, “Bob Casey could have used his vote to stop Joe Biden’s invasion of this country. Instead, he voted in favor of sanctuary cities. He voted to give illegal aliens taxpayer funded benefits. He voted against the border wall and he supports Joe Biden’s bill to institute a minimum of 2 million illegal border crosses every year.”

Trans Rights, Critical Race Theory, Vaccines

Trump left culture wars issues to the end of his speech, going into a rant about trans women in sports, a key issue among Republicans, as PGN has reported throughout the primary. Trump told the crowd, “And on day one, I will sign a new executive order to cut federal funding for any school pushing critical race theory, transgender insanity, and any other inappropriate racial, sexual or political content onto our children. And I will not give one penny to any school that has a vaccine mandate or a mask mandate.”

Philadelphia schools require vaccinations for over 20 communicable diseases, including measles, which has seen a resurgence due to failure to vaccinate, and other deadly diseases such as polio, tuberculosis, diphtheria, tetanus, hepatitis B and more.

Trump said, “And I will keep men out of women’s sports on day one. Signed. How embarrassing is it to say that? But how embarrassing it is to say we will keep men out of women’s sports? Who would want men to play women’s sports? And yet for them, for all these people, including the fake news media, for whatever reason, it’s a big deal. Who would want it?”

Trump then spoke about trans women in women’s weightlifting. “Did you ever look at the weightlifting records? Records that stood for 18 years, and a guy comes up? ‘Have you lifted before? No, I haven’t.’ When I say a guy, a person who transitioned. ‘Have you lifted before? No, I haven’t. Really? A couple of days. Oh.’ Gets over the thing. Bing, bing, bing.”

Trump threw his hands in the air as the crowd booed the issue.

“Are we crazy? Or the swimming where they obliterate records. Obliterate. The women get wind burn as the boys go by. ‘I’m suffering tremendous wind burn.’ ‘What happened?’ The doctor says. ‘Oh, well I was swimming, I’m an Olympic swimmer, but a person transitioned and he went by me so fast that the wind burned the hell out of me, doctor.’ No, it’s so crazy. And it’s so horrible for women. It’s so embarrassing for women.”

Trump reiterated that he would overturn any policies of Biden’s that support trans rights.

Concerns for November

Other issues Trump spoke about throughout the speech were his trials, which he said all the best legal analysts have said are a sham. He again asserted that the 2020 election was stolen and that he actually won. He also said Biden had lost control of the world stage and the Middle East war. And he detailed the problems with pulling out from Afghanistan, a key point for the GOP. 


In 2020 at the height of the pandemic, Trump told his base not to use mail-in ballots. It can be argued that he might have won the election if he hadn’t undermined that method of voting when Americans were so afraid of getting COVID. Democrats voted overwhelmingly by mail-in votes. Trump said, “Philadelphia had the most egregious voter fraud of anywhere in the world” in 2020. 

In point of fact, Philly was a bastion of voter protection and Commissioner Al Schmidt, a Republican, was lauded for his work to secure the vote. Trump’s people threatened him and his family.

Trump said in November, “Republicans must win. We have to get out and vote. We want to do a landslide that’s… You know the expression, too big to rig. Too big to rig, right?”

He said, “We need volunteers and poll watches to watch and make sure they’re not cheating, which, of course, they’re going to try. It’s the only way… We need to secure the vote. It’s called secure the vote. We have a big program, secure the vote. Basically you go,, sign up. Because we cannot let this happen again. In Philadelphia, they used a lot of things to cheat. But we’re not going to let it happen again. You’re not going to let it happen again.”

Trump ended with a paean to Philadelphia, the Founding Fathers “So in conclusion, from Harrisburg to Pittsburgh, from Eastern to Bethlehem, and from Altoona to right here in Philadelphia, we stand on the shoulders of American legends who poured out their blood, sweat, and tears for our rights and for our freedom. Think of this, Benjamin Franklin, Betsy Ross, the American flag and the Liberty Bell. Not too many cities can compete with that one. It’s where Thomas Jefferson wrote the words, “All men are created equal.” Where our Founding Fathers declared American independence. Where our Constitution was written to secure American freedom.”

He said once he was re-elected, he would fix the damage from the Biden presidency. “Crooked. Joe Biden, the worst president in the history of our country, will be a fading memory of the past.”

This content is a part of Every Voice, Every Vote, a collaborative project managed by The Lenfest Institute for Journalism. Lead support for Every Voice, Every Vote in 2024 and 2025 is provided by the William Penn Foundation with additional funding from The Lenfest Institute for Journalism, Comcast NBC Universal, The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Henry L. Kimelman Family Foundation, Judy and Peter Leone, Arctos Foundation, Wyncote Foundation, 25th Century Foundation, and Dolfinger-McMahon Foundation. To learn more about the project and view a full list of supporters, visit Editorial content is created independently of the project’s donors.
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