Trump holds rally in Pennsylvania for Republican candidate, calls NBC anchor 'a sleeping son of a b***h'

File photo: US President Donald Trump. Photograph:( AFP )

WION Web Team Pennsylvania, USA Mar 11, 2018, 04.38 PM (IST)

US President Donald Trump held a rally in Pennsylvania to bolster support for state Representative Rick Saccone who will contest in Tuesday's special congressional election to secure a House seat, the media reported.

"This guy should win easily... I hate to put pressure on you, Rick," Trump said on Saturday night at the rally in Moon Township, the heart of America`s steel industry where he beat Hillary Clinton by 20 percentage points in 2016.

Trump opened his 75-minute whirlwind of a speech by touting his administration's new trade tariffs — 25 per cent on steel imports and 10 per cent on aluminium imports — before wading into the Olympics, previewing his 2020 campaign slogan and again called for enacting the death penalty for drug dealers, reports CNN.

Republican congressional candidate Rick Saccone speaks during a Make America Great Again rally in Moon Township, Pennsylvania. (Reuters)

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President Donald Trump attacked his critics, promoted his steel and aluminium tariffs and tossed out an idea to have drug dealers face the death penalty, addressing the rally.

But while he heartily endorsed Saccone as a "really good person," Trump spent a lot of time talking about his own fortunes in a "Make America Great Again" rally in an airport hangar at the Pittsburgh International Airport.

He said it was crucial for Republicans to muster forces to turn back a strong Democratic drive to win one or both houses of the US Congress in November midterm elections.

"We need Republicans. We need the vote," Trump said, saying Democrats would take away, among other things, "your Second Amendment rights" to bear firearms.

Continuing his battle against the mainstream news media, Trump insulted NBC News' "Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd and Democratic Congresswoman Maxine Waters.

He called NBC host Chuck Todd — who he’s nicknamed “sleepy eyes” — a “sleeping son of a b***h” and described Democratic Rep
representative Maxine Waters as a “very low IQ individual,” reports CNN.

Under pressure over a scandal involving a porn star named Stormy Daniels, Trump singled out his wife, Melania, for praise.

"You think her life is so easy folks? Not so easy," he said.

Saccone is trying to win an election on Tuesday in Pennsylvania's 18th District to replace Republican Tim Murphy, who resigned last fall while enmeshed in a sex scandal.

Polls show Saccone is in a close race against Democrat Conor Lamb. A Saccone loss would be the first loss of a Republican seat in the House of Representatives since Trump took office in January 2017, although Republicans would still control of the chamber.

The race could signal how much help Trump can provide Republican congressional candidates trying to keep control of both the House of Representatives and the Senate in midterm elections next November.

Typically the party that controls the White House loses seats in the US Congress in the first election after a new president takes office. Trump hopes a strong economy and tax cuts enacted in December will help him beat the odds.

(With inputs from Agencies)