NEWTOWN, Pa. — In his latest attempt to pitch himself to Pennsylvania voters, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump stumped in the Philadelphia suburbs, where he finds himself behind the eight ball less two and a half weeks before Election Day.
Trump made his pitch to voters north of Philadelphia, where he talked up rebuilding the U.S. Navy, including the introduction of his plan to build 350 naval ships in the U.S. under a Trump administration.
"Our Navy is the smallest it's been since World War I. My plan will be to build 350 ships — we need a 350 ship navy. It's much lower than that right now," Trump said. "It will be the largest effort at rebuilding our military since Ronald Reagan and it will require a truly national effort, and do we need that or what?"
Trump pointed to the Philadelphia Navy Yard as a place that could be part of this expansion.
Throughout the event, Trump predicted a win in the Keystone State, where he currently trails former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton by 6.2 percentage points, according to the latest RealClearPolitics average. Toward the end of his relatively brief 31 minute speech, Trump predicted an outcome of "Brexit times five," referring to Great Britain's referendum vote in June to leave the European Union.
The GOP nominee's event was held in Bucks County, part of the four "collar" counties that play enlarged roles in presidential contests. In 2012, Bucks County went for Barack Obama by 4,000 votes and is part of an area that has been hostile to Trump's candidacy.
While Trump has seen levels of support in Western Pa. buoy his chances in the Keystone State, the Philadelphia suburbs remain a problematic spot for him. A recent Bloomberg poll showed that Clinton holds a 29-point lead in the suburbs (59-31 percent), compared to a 9 point lead statewide (51-42).
Despite recent polling, supporters of the real estate mogul are still steadfast in their belief that Trump will win in Pennsylvania on Nov. 8, citing enthusiasm in the area in his favor.
"It is what it is. I don't think the polls are accurate. I think each poll is set up to end up a certain way. So we'll find out on [Nov.] 8th, but I think he's going to win in a landslide," said Barry Robert Casper, who was a Trump delegate from the 8th Congressional district at July's Republican National Convention. Despite his claim that Trump will win in a "landslide," he admitted that it will be a tough fight between the two in Bucks County.
"It's going to be tight here, but, you know, it's 10,000 people outside for 4,000 tickets," he added referring to the crowd outside the Newtown Athletic Complex, the site of Friday night's rally.
"He's a breath of fresh air," said Michelle Brown, 50, from nearby Churchville. "I've only seen Trump-Pence signs all over. I only see 'Hillary For Prison' signs going around."
It was Trump's second event in the state on the day, having held a campaign rally in Johnstown, near Pittsburgh. He is also set to hit Central Pa. on Saturday, where he will hold a campaign event in Gettysburg.