Donald Trump attended a Republican Jewish Coalition event in Las Vegas on Saturday, where he, among other things, referred to Benjamin Netanyahu as “your prime minister,” asked a room full of Republicans why they supported for Obama, compared U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman to a “wonderful, beautiful baby,” and, just in case the crowd wasn’t fully aware he got them, kept claiming he spent a lot of time in “Brooklyn.”
You can watch the speech in entirety on C-SPAN’s website, if you dare, though Vox’s Aaron Rupar helpfully posted some C-SPAN clips on Twitter if you can’t sit through the whole thing, Now, where to begin?
First, there’s the “your prime minister” line, which Trump emitted while asking the room who was going to “win the race.” Note that he was not referring to the upcoming 2020 presidential election, but to the Israeli election on April 9. Presumably, the American Republic Jewish Coalition will not vote in that election.
“I stood with your prime minister at the White House to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights,” he said, to cheers. “The Golan Heights is something I’ve been hearing about for a long time.” Okay.
Onto Obama, a man the Republican Jewish Coalition presumably neither voted for nor supported. Not that Trump figured that one out. “How the hell did you support President Obama? How did you do it? How did you support the Democrats?” Trump asked. (The room, to its credit, did remind him that they did not.)
And here’s Trump referring to a grown man as “like a wonderful, beautiful baby”:
And, last but not least, Trump tried out a new word he learned: Brooklyn.
I know Brooklyn very well. My father, I loved my father very much, Brooklyn. Spent a lot of time in Brooklyn. You learn a lot in Brooklyn. You get through Brooklyn, you gotta be smart.
(Note that Fred Trump is from The Bronx, not Brooklyn, though he did own apartment buildings in the borough.)
Other speech highlights: a slam on Ilhan Omar (“Oh, I forgot, she doesn’t like Israel, I forgot, I’m so sorry. No, she doesn’t like Israel, does she,”) a reference to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as “a wonderful, young bartender,” and an assertion that the “asylum program is a scam.”
Trump’s long been trying to paint the Democrats as anti-Jewish and position himself as the pro-Jewish candidate for some time now, while simultaneously dogwhistling and offering tacit support for white nationalists who are decidedly not friends of the Jews (or so I would assume based on some fun emails I get). The gambit probably won’t work, considering American Jews have historically supported Democrats over Republicans by a 2 to 1 margin, but at least Sheldon Adelson’s happy.