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LIVE BLOG: Trump leaves stage after Columbia rally

ABC 17 News will provide updates here throughout the day from Columbia Regional Airport, where President Donald Trump is expected to hold a rally at 6:30 p.m.

11:04 p.m.

ABC 17’s Ashley Strohmier landed an exclusive interview with President Donald Trump after he appeared at a Columbia rally in support of Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley.

8:15 p.m.

President Donald Trump has left the stage at his rally at Columbia Regional Airport, where he and Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley sought to paint Democratic U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill as an extreme leftist at a rally before a boisterous at Columbia Regional Airport on Thursday.

Trump, who left the stage more than an hour after he took it, hit McCaskill, the incumbent trying to keep her seat against Republican Hawley in Tuesday’s election, for voting against a large income tax cut and against confirming Trump’s Supreme Court nominees.

Trump labeled McCaskill views extreme and out of touch with most Americans, saying the Republican agenda is the nation’s “mainstream agenda.”

“It’s how we all got here,” Trump said. Later he said “a vote for Claire is a vote for more taxes, more crime and illegal immigration.”

Trump said a vote for Hawley would be a vote to reduce taxes, “substantially reduce crime” and institute tougher immigration regulations.

“Claire McCaskill promised to represent the people of Missouri but she broke that promise and joined the radical Democrats,” Trump said.

At one point Hawley, who took the stage in the middle of the rally, compared McCaskill to former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, with some in the crowd chanting “lock her up.”

“On Nov. 6, because of the leadership of President Trump, we’re going to call Claire McCaskill ‘fired,'” Hawley said.

Trump also said Democrats, including McCaskill, want to socialize health care and eliminate Medicare.

“Republicans want to protect Medicare for our great seniors, who have paid for it and guess what? They’ve earned it,” Trump said.

He also said Republicans would protect insurance coverage for pre-existing conditions, an issue that has taken center stage in Missouri’s Senate race. Trump also discussed his plan to eliminate birthright citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

Look for complete coverage of Trump’s appearance tonight on ABC 17 News at 9 and 10 and later at

7:12 p.m.

The speech is available on TV on KZOU. It’s 17.3 over the air and channel 12 on Mediacom, Charter and CenturyLink. KZOU is on 13 on Suddenlink, 32 on Dish Network and 18 on DirecTV.

6:40 p.m.

Air Force One has rolled up on the tarmac at Columbia Regional Airport. Watch President Donald Trump’s speech live with our livestream player below.

6:22 p.m.

ABC 17’s Sara Maslar-Donar reports the overflow area to watch President Donald Trump’s rally at Columbia Regional Airport is full. Rally organizers are telling people who arrive that they can watch the rally on the giant screen outside the hangar from outside the overflow area, however.

6:19 p.m.

People still showing up at the rally are being directed to an overflow area, ABC 17’s Jasmine Ramirez reports.

Hangar 350 hit capacity hours ago. People will now stand in an overflow area during the rally as more are arriving right now #TrumpInCoMo #ABC17News

— Jasmine Ramirez (@JasmineABC17) November 1, 2018

Officials are also warning pedestrians to keep a look out for vehicles because traffic is flowing.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol also issued a warning for those leaving the rally when it’s over.

REMINDER: People have been arriving @flyfromcou since the early AM, but everyone will be leaving at the exact SAME time. PLEASE watch for pedestrians & expect traffic delays on #US63 this evening!

— MSHP Troop F (@MSHPTrooperF) November 1, 2018

6 p.m.

ABC 17’s Ashley Strohmier reports President Donald Trump will now go on stage at 6:45 p.m.

Local officials say traffic is congested on Highway 63 near the Columbia Regional Airport exit.

5:18 p.m.

President Donald Trump tweeted a little after 5 p.m. that Air Force One is on its way to Columbia.

On my way to Columbia, Missouri for a #MAGARally. Look forward to seeing everyone soon!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 1, 2018

5:07 p.m.

People are walking for miles to get the President Donald Trump’s rally at the Columbia Regional Airport. Meanwhile, a long line of vehicles remains along Route H.

Below is a video of some interviews and scenes ABC 17’s Lucas Geisler got inside the hangar.

We’re continuing to add photos of the scene outside President Donald Trump’s rally to a photo gallery.

4:25 p.m.

MoDOT says there are no significant delays on southbound Highway 63. Rally traffic is also being diverted onto Highway 163 along Highway 63, so officials say don’t use it as a keyboard.

Right now we’re not experiencing any extended delays on southbound 63. Just delays at the exit to the airport on SB 63.

— MoDOT Central Dist (@MoDOT_Central) November 1, 2018

4 p.m.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol says parking is still available along Highway 163, but it’s a long walk.

The only place left to park is on MO 163. Be prepared to walk.

— MSHP Troop F (@MSHPTrooperF) November 1, 2018

3:55 p.m.

Local officials say there’s no more parking available for President Donald Trump’s rally at the Columbia Regional Airport.

BOONE CO JOINT COM: The event at the airport has no more parking available.

— Joint Communications (@BCJC911) November 1, 2018

We’re now streaming video from inside the hangar. You can watch live with the video player below.

3:30 p.m.

The hangar is now full at Columbia Regional Airport. Viewing is still available from the exterior.

BOONE CO JOINT COM: The event at the airport has no more vacancies inside the building. Viewing is available from the exterior, but parking is limited.

— Joint Communications (@BCJC911) November 1, 2018

3:24 p.m.

MoDOT says traffic is backed up for approximately one mile on Route 63.


Delays are likely on southbound Route 63, north of the Route H/Columbia Airport Interchange. Traffic is backed up approximately one mile, but is moving. Northbound traffic seeing little impact.

— MoDOT Central Dist (@MoDOT_Central) November 1, 2018

3:08 p.m.

MoDOT is reminding people to be prepared for delays during rush hour on 63.

We are now experiencing some slowdowns on southbound 63 at Rt. H, just west of the airport. Be prepared if this is part of your #rushhour commute. #DriveSafe #POTUS #CoMo @ABC17News @KOMUnews @KRCG13 @MSHPTrooperF @CoMissourian @zim

— MoDOT Central Dist (@MoDOT_Central) November 1, 2018

2:30 p.m.

ABC 17’s Sara Maslar-Donar says buses were having issues wading through the large amounts of people in the area.

Currently hearing on the bus radio that they’re working to get buses on the gravel road – it was wall to wall with people walking before but I’m hearing it’s now clear so that busses can get through and avoid this crazy traffic. #abc17news #TrumpinCoMo@SaraABC17

— ABC 17 News (@ABC17News) November 1, 2018

2:24 p.m.

ABC 17’s Sara Maslar-Donar is on the bus heading to the Columbia Regional Airport. People are traveling from all over the state to see the president.

We’re on the bus heading over! Just spoke with a woman who lives 2 hours away. She said she took her daughter out of school today b.cuz she figured she’d learn more here anyway. #abc17news #TrumpinCoMo

— Sara Maslar-Donar (@SaraABC17) November 1, 2018

2:05 p.m.

ABC 17’s Sara Maslar-Donar reports long lines are forming for the shuttle from the parking lot to the airport.

Got a long line of folks waiting for the shuttle, which is stuck in traffic on Airport Road. If you wanted to head out to the rally, you should probably come sooner rather than later. #abc17news #TrumpInCoMo@SaraABC17

— ABC 17 News (@ABC17News) November 1, 2018

1:45 p.m.

Law enforcement is starting to direct vehicles to park in an area east of the Cartwright business park.

Law enforcement is having cars park on the eastside of the Cartwright Business and Technology Center. #trumpincomo #abc17

— Kelsey Kernstine (@KelseyKABC17) November 1, 2018

1:37 p.m.

Crowds are starting to move outside the hangar at Columbia Regional Airport where President Donald Trump will speak, reports ABC 17’s Jasmine Ramirez.

ABC 17’s Barry Mangold says traffic is backing up outside the parking area and Kelsey Kernstine reports cars are being sent to an area east of the Cartwright Business and Technology Park.

People are starting to move in line getting closer to the hangar President Trump will hold his rally in #TrumpInCoMO #ABC17News

— Jasmine Ramirez (@JasmineABC17) November 1, 2018

PHOTO: Traffic backed up leading to @FLYFROMCOU for Trump rally #TrumpInComo #ABC17News

— Barry Mangold (@barryABC17) November 1, 2018

1:25 p.m.

We’re starting to stream live from just outside the hangar where President Trump is expected to speak.

12:55 p.m.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol is warning travelers that traffic is backing up on Highway 63 outside the Columbia Regional Airport.

Route H is backed up from @FLYFROMCOU to the US 63 overpass. Traffic is moving, but it is slow.

— MSHP Troop F (@MSHPTrooperF) November 1, 2018

12:40 p.m.

We’re starting to stream live from the Columbia Regional Airport.

11:45 a.m.

ABC 17 News reporter Kelsey Kernstine says parking is filling up fast, with cars quickly entering the parking area at Cartwright business park. Trump is expected to speak at 6:30 p.m.

After the lot fills up law enforcement will direct cars to park on the gravel shoulder of Route H. The lot is muddy, so people wanting to see Trump are advised to wear boots. A building at the business park has spaces available for handicapped parking.

ABC 17’s Jasmine Ramirez says thousands are filling the area outside the hangar where Trump is expected to speak. Doors open at 3:30 p.m.

We’ll have team coverage in our noon newscast. Click here for a live stream starting at noon.

11:30 a.m.

Crowds started to form early this morning at Columbia Regional Airport. We had team coverage, and Deborah Kendrick interviewed one man who traveled from south of St. Louis.

We’ll have team coverage in our noon newscast. Click here for a live stream starting at noon.

10:20 a.m.

The Ashland Police Department has posted on Facebook that all parking on paved streets within the Cartwright business park are taken.

Vehicles can park in fields, but that’s limited to four-wheel drive vehicles because of mud.

Officials have closed Airport Drive and Angel Lane. Cartwright business park can only be accessed from Route H.

9:45 a.m.

We’re starting to compile photos from the Columbia Regional Airport into a gallery. You can view it below.

9 a.m.

Shuttle buses started running from Cartwright Business and Technology Park at Route H and Highway 63 to Columbia Regional Airport at 8:30 a.m. ABC 17’s Deborah Kendrick reports long lines for entry into the hangar where Trump will speak at 6:30 p.m.

Some people were in line as early as 5 a.m.

The line currently (8:40 a.m.) at COU #trumpincomo

— Deborah Kendrick (@DeborahABC17) November 1, 2018

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