What I Saw at the Trump Rally

Over at the WEEKLY STANDARD, I have a piece on last night’s Donald Trump rally in Manassas. You can read the whole thing here, but here’s a brief excerpt.

Manassas, Virginia
Make no mistake: Donald Trump is running a serious, well-organized campaign. Wednesday night, it showed.

I arrived at the Prince William County Fairgrounds last night for the Donald’s first big rally in the Washington metro area just as the doors were opening at 5:30.

Story continues below

The Secret Service, now entrusted with Mr. Trump’s safety, manned two security checkpoints for rallygoers. One for guests, the other for media. I did not RSVP as media, yet, I went to the media check-in booth anyway to see if my press pass would help me acquire a coveted campaign trail event credential.

It didn’t.

Unlike other events, where journalists with government-issued press credentials can sign in, the Trump campaign required that latecomers email Trump campaign coordinator Megan Powers to ask for one. If she agreed, she would tell the on-site staff to give a credential. Or not.

Powers, who graduated from NYU earlier this year, presumably wields a lot of power here, deciding who in the press does or does not get access to the press area. And with the Trump campaign’s recent history of denying credentials to reporters from various outlets, I wasn’t about to wait around and take my chances.

After all, I already had a ticket to the event, since I was one of the first to register as a guest. I was made aware of the event because after buying a red “MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN” hat, I somehow ended up on an official volunteer email list for Trump supporters, and RSVP’d.

Read the rest of the item.

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