President TrumpDonald John TrumpSenate advances public lands bill in late-night vote Warren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases Esper orders ‘After Action Review’ of National Guard’s role in protests MORE is downplaying the potential for his campaign appearances to ramp up Democratic turnout in this year’s midterms, saying the rallies have a more positive effect on his base.
Trump told The Wall Street Journal in an interview on Wednesday that the rallies — which he has held more frequently in recent weeks — might energize Democrats, but countered that “it energizes my people much more than it energizes them.”
“I think the Democrats give up when I turn out,” Trump said. “If you want to know the truth, I don’t think it energizes them. I think it de-energizes them. I think they give up when I turn out.”
Trump has held rallies in recent weeks in Pennsylvania, Ohio and Florida to drum up support for congressional and state-wide candidates. He has also taken the credit for Republican victories in recent special elections, and for his preferred candidates prevailing in primaries.
“As long as I can get out and campaign, I think they’re going to win, I really do,” Trump told the Journal. “It’s a lot of work for me. I have to make 50 stops, it’s a lot. So, there aren’t a lot of people that can do that, physically. Fortunately, I have no problem with that.”
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Trump has indicated he plans to be on the road campaigning “six or seven days a week” to support Republican candidates.
The president has repeatedly expressed optimism about the GOP’s prospects in the midterms, suggesting a “red wave” is possible.
Polls and historical trends suggest otherwise, however. The party in power typically loses seats in midterm elections, and a RealClearPolitics average of generic ballot polling shows Democrats leading Republicans by nearly 7 percentage points.
A CNN poll released Wednesday showed Democrats with an 11-point advantage.