- The Washington Times - Friday, August 12, 2016

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus made a surprise appearance at the Donald Trump rally Friday in Pennsylvania, pushing back against reports about a rift in the party and enthusiastically backing Mr. Trump.

“Don’t believe the garbage you read,” said Mr. Preibus. “Let me tell you something, Donald Trump, the Republican Party, all of you — we’re going to put him in the White House and save this country together.”

Mr. Priebus whipped up the massive crowd. He touted the integrity of Mr. Trump and his running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, which he said was a major difference with Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

“Here’s the difference. Donald Trump and Mike Pence will tell the truth,” he said. “They’ll protect your Second Amendment rights, they’ll protect the southern border, they’ll protect the sovereignty of the United states — our great country.”

Mr. Preibus took the stage in Erie, Pennsylvania, amid reports of an uprising within the party urging him to redirect funding from Donald Trump’s campaign to down-ballot Republican candidates to avoid a massive whip out in November.

The letter was signed by 70 Republicans, including ex-elected officials and former party staffer.

At the rally, Mr. Priebus said the party was standing behind Mr. Trump.

“We’re in a battle for freedom in this country,” he said. “Donald Trump is going to help protect us, protect our country, secure our border, do the things to make America great again.”

He said voters had a stark choice.

“Look at the choice we’ve got. Hillary Clinton has a problem with lying. She lied, she lied and she lied over and over and over again,” he said. “She lied when she said she turned over those work-related emails. She lied when she said nothing in these emails was confidential. She lied when she said she only only one device.”

The crowd began chanting: “Lock her up! Lock her up!’

The chant has become common at GOP rallies since the Justice Department decided last month not to pursue criminal charges against Mrs. Clinton for her secret email setup as secretary of state, despite a FBI investigation finding “extreme carelessness” and mishandling of classified information.

“Let’s do this,” Mr. Priebus said, interrupting the chants. “Let’s beat her in November.”

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