President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign wants to turn Minnesota red in 2020 — and it’s counting on women to make it happen.
Second Lady Karen Pence and Lara Trump, the president’s daughter-in-law, drew hundreds of women — and a few men — to St. Paul’s Union Depot for a standing-room-only event Wednesday night.
“They tell us women for Trump do not exist, but here you are,” Kayleigh McEnany, national press secretary for Trump’s 2020 campaign, said before introducing the two women to the cheering crowd.
The visit came a day before both Trump and Vice President Mike Pence were scheduled to visit the Twin Cities. It drew a crowd, dotted with bright red outfits and “Make America Great Again” caps, that started lining up more than an hour before the event began.
Seated in front of a “Women for Trump” sign and flanked by U.S. and Minnesota flags, Karen Pence and Lara Trump, who is married to the president’s son Eric, told stories about the first time they met the future president, and then launched into a variety of issues — the economy, support for veterans, health care, immigration.
They acknowledged that some women may still be undecided on who they’ll vote for in 2020 — and even if they have decided, “we know it’s not easy sometimes to be a Trump supporter,” Lara Trump said.
“A part of it is a little bit sad to me, that people cannot say in this country, ‘I’m voting for Donald Trump again,’ ” Pence said. “I just want to encourage you not to be afraid.”
Throughout the hourlong panel, Pence and Lara Trump repeated their conviction that this president is the best choice for women — and that those in the crowd should encourage their friends to make the same choice.
“I think for me, especially being a mom of young women, I look at my daughters and my daughter-in-law and I say to them, ‘This is a president who cares about your future,’ ” Pence said. “If you’re on the fence as a young woman, you need to look at the facts.”
Emma Nelson • 612-673-4509