Trump's Election Day message: Reagan never had rallies like mine

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Trump told the hosts of 'Fox & Friends' that sure, Ronald Reagan was popular, but not like Trump.

Donald Trump kicked off Election Day 2020 calling in to his favorite Fox News morning show to claim that he's more popular than former president and Republican folk hero Ronald Reagan.

Trump made the comment while bragging on "Fox & Friends" about his campaign rally turnout — in which his campaign has violated coronavirus social distancing regulations to pack people into events that have helped spread the deadly virus.

Trump claimed to have 30,000 to 40,000 people at his rallies — which is a lie, as his rallies have been smaller this cycle — and said that Reagan would never get a crowd like that.

DONALD TRUMP: You have 30, 40,000 more in this big area, and you feel the love, it's so incredible. It's – and that's what I'm telling you, Tucker [Carlson] did an unbelievable piece, he got it, he figured it out, 'cause it's never happened before in the history of our country. Never anything like this. You know, when Biden goes he has 20 or 30 people, that's not so different from a lot of other people. If Ronald Reagan came in to do a rally, 'cause he was a popular guy, if he had 200 or 300 people, that's fine, that's like, you know, anticipated. Usually, they'd go to a ballroom and they'd have it in a ballroom. I'm coming in and we're having 45,000 people. You ought to see the rally we had the other night in Miami. Ended at one o'clock in the morning. The people had to leave, they didn't want to leave. It's been amazing.

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Of course, crowd size is not an indicator of how well a candidate will do in an election.

Reagan won both his 1980 and 1984 elections by far more than Trump won in 2016.

In 1980, Reagan won 489 Electoral College votes.

1980 election map
270 to win

Four years later, Reagan won an astounding 525 Electoral College votes.

1984 election map
270 to win

Both of those totals blow Trump's 304 Electoral College votes in 2016.

Reagan also had a far higher average approval rating than Trump.

According to Gallup, Reagan had a 52.8% average approval rating throughout his tenure. Trump's current approval rating is 44.6%, according to FiveThirtyEight's average.

It's unclear how bragging about having bigger rally turnout than Reagan will help Trump in the final hours of the race.

Former President Barack Obama even mocked Trump's obsession with campaign rally turnout in a campaign event for Democratic nominee Joe Biden last week.

"What is his obsession, by the way, with crowd size?" Obama asked about Trump. "This is the one measure he has of success. He's still worrying about his inauguration crowd being smaller than mine," Obama said. "Does he have nothing better to worry about? Did no one come to his birthday party as a kid? Was he traumatized?"

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.