Trump made a speech on Sunday at the annual Rolling Thunder biker rally on the National Mall in Washington, DC this weekend, to a largely lukewarm response if the above video is to believed. Trump goes on at about the 33:00 mark, but watch some of the earlier footage, when the camera is focused on the crowd. There is plenty of space perhaps only 40 feet from the stage, the rally seems much more lightly attended than many of Trump’s rallies. Which makes his remarks about the number of people “trying to get in” to the rally all the more bizarre.
The first thing he says in his speech to mention that he saw “hundreds of thousands of bikers” on his way into DC: “So in riding over there are hundreds of thousands of people along the highways, and they can’t get in. In other words, you’re very good at real estate. You got in. Congratulations.”
At the 49:45 mark he again addresses the attendance, saying “I thought this would be like Dr. Martin Luther King, where the people would be lined up from here all the way to the Washington Monument, right? Unfortunately, they don’t allow them to come in.” Trump doesn’t elaborate on who “they” are, or why they would not be allowed to attended the rally. He does make up a number at the 51:30 mark, saying “we have the biggest rallies by far, far bigger than Bernie Sanders, far bigger. I mean look at today, they say you have 600,000 people essentially here, trying to get in. But that’s not gonna happen. But they say you have 600,000.” Again, not sure who “they” are.
When Dr. King spoke at the Washington Mall and it was completely filled as Trump described, it was estimated that there were 200,000 people present. 600,000 people is the entire population of the city of Washington, DC. A small roped off part in front of the Lincoln Memorial was about half full for Trump’s speech.
A spokesperson for the Rolling Thunder rally confirmed that the event was attended by 5,000 people.