Turns out Donald Trump’s rally was even more of a disaster than we thought


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The thought of Donald Trump returning to the White House is frightening, and so every step his campaign takes in pursuit of that goal can appear alarming. Trump’s rallies, for example, can easily come across as scary because they’re events aimed at energizing and growing his base while amplifying his message. However, the reality is that the power of Trump’s rallies has been fading—and they probably never had the wide impact on election results that Trump has wanted us all to believe.

Trump’s recent rally in Wildwood, New Jersey, is a case in point. First, the crowd size was far less than he hoped for. Trump spokesperson Steven Cheung claimed that “over 100,000 people patriots” were there. However, Wildwood Mayor Ernie Troiano Jr., a Republican, had said earlier that about 20,000 tickets had been requested and that’s the maximum number the area can accommodate, according to a Newsweek report.

That didn’t stop Roger Stone from posting a completely unrelated photo—as if it were the rally—as proof that Trump can win New Jersey in November. The photo was of a Rod Stewart concert in 1994 that attracted roughly 4 million people, as detailed by Raw Story. After being outed, Stone explained away his deception by claiming he was only joking. “Liberals have no sense of humor. 10,000 people at the New Jersey shore is still 10,000 people. #Trump2024,” he wrote.

Even more noteworthy is that many attendees lost interest and bailed on Trump in the middle of his incoherent word salad. From Trump heaping praise on fictional serial killer Hannibal Lecter, calling him a “wonderful man,” to his taking aim at Bruce Springsteen (prompting fans of the New Jersey legend to deride Trump as a “moron,” according to a report from The Independent), it’s not surprising there was a “mass ‘walking out,’” as Newsweek described it.

A new analysis this week from the Washington Post in the wake of the Wildwood rally aims to offer us a “regular reminder” that “rally turnout doesn’t predict election results.” Although Trump wants us to think that large crowd sizes translate to carrying a particular state on Election Day, the reality is far more complicated and less rosy for Trump. For example, in counties where Trump held rallies during the general election in 2016, he performed worse than he did in the surrounding counties.

Not only have Trump rallies never been some magical diving board into a sea of electoral success, but their popularity and attraction, not to mention frequency, are waning. As Trump’s world continues crumbling, his failed rallies are proving to be more of a liability than an asset for his campaign. With less than six months to go before Election Day, this news can’t be more welcome.

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