First lady Melania Trump labeled Democratic nominee Joe Biden a “socialist” and challenged his lengthy record in politics as she hit the campaign trail for her husband on Tuesday after a year-long absence.
With early voting in full swing and one week until Election Day, the first lady made her 2020 race debut with a 15-minute speech in Atglen, Penn., where she warned the crowd that a vote for the Democratic Party would send the nation “backwards.”
“Joe Biden’s policies and socialist agenda will only serve to destroy America and all that has been built in the past four years,” Trump told voters in the Keystone State after being introduced by former White House counselor Kellyanne Conway.
“Joe Biden attacked President Trump’s decision to put the American people first and close travel from China. He called it xenophobic hysteria. Now, he suggests that he could have done a better job,” she said.
“Well, the American people can look at Joe Biden’s 36 years in Congress and eight years in the vice presidency and determine whether they think he will finally be able to get something done for the American people,” she said to cheers.
The notoriously private first lady has refrained from wading into the political arena and aside from her Rose Garden speech at the Republican National Convention in August, has not appeared at a campaign event since her husband’s re-election kickoff rally in Florida in June 2019.
But the Slovenian-born mom-of-one did not pull any punches on Tuesday, criticizing Democrats for casting doubt on the safety of a COVID-19 vaccine and focusing on a “sham impeachment” as the pandemic first arrived on US shores.
“The Democrats have chosen to put their own agendas ahead of the American people’s wellbeing,” she said. “Let us not forget what the Democrats chose to focus on when COVID-19 first came into this country.
“While the president was taking decisive action to keep the American people safe, the Democrats were wasting American taxpayer dollars in a sham impeachment,” she continued.
The 50-year-old ex-model also lashed the media for their coverage of her husband’s administration, accusing them of only being interested in “idle gossip and palace intrigue.”
“When he decided to run for president as a Republican, the media created a different picture of my husband, one I don’t recognize, and treated all of his supporters with equal disdain,” she said.
Tuesday’s stump speech was also Melania Trump’s first public appearance since the first family tested positive for the respiratory bug and she was forced to cancel a trip to Pennsylvania last week due to a lingering cough.
Hailing the president as a “fighter,” the president’s third wife said her husband would secure more economic growth and stronger borders because he was “tough, successful and fair.”
“And handsome!” a woman in the audience yelled out.
“I agree,” Melania said to laughter from supporters.
Her visit to the commonwealth follows President Trump’s blitzkrieg there Monday where he held three rallies as he tries to close Biden’s shrinking advantage in the polls.
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