Their candidates made strong showings a year ago in special congressional elections in Georgia, Kansas and Montana, but ultimately fell short in those Republican strongholds.
President Trump is holding a campaign rally outside of Pittsburgh on Saturday night to boost Republican congressional candidate Rick Saccone, who has been struggling to lock up a special election in a district Trump won by almost 20 points in the 2016 election.
In spite of that applause, union veterans in attendance said that while they may be excited about defeating Rick Saccone, they aren't naive, either. Liberals' fury at President Trump is so strong that even in a blue-collar district he won by 20 points his support for Saccone is a two-edged sword.
Republican Rep. Tim Murphy represented the district from 2003 until this year.
Trump also mocked global criticism of the steel and aluminum tariffs he ordered this past week.
"And to all the military out there, we respect you very much, thank you", Trump said mockingly. 'You think her life is so easy folks? We have to have him, " he said. "He believes in things just like us, and we are gonna elect someone who does and believes things just like us".
Republicans say Democrats are benefiting from an "A+ candidate", whereas they have a lackluster option, who's struggled to raise money.
Pennsylvania voter Michelle Grimpe similarly tells CNN that she's backing Saccone - but she says that she doesn't "like necessary how the president presents himself" and she said that Trump's attitude made her feel tempted to back Saccone's rival, Democrat Conor Lamb.
And whatever support they may have had from Trump fizzled nearly as soon as he gave it. Trump ignored their outstretched hand on universal background checks and started talking more about arming teachers.
President Donald Trump gave a raucous, freewheeling speech in Pennsylvania on Saturday, in which he lashed out at some of his favorite targets, one by one. He also revealed his new slogan for the 2020 campaign: "Keep America Great!"
"Oh I'd love Oprah to win, I'd love to beat Oprah".
Foreign enemies, too, occupied Trump's mind.
'Many countries have the problem, we have a problem, but what a great job you are doing and I just wanted to call and tell you that'.
The president mentioned his threat to start an all-out trade war with the European Union over his steel and aluminum tariffs, saying again that he meant to tax European cars if the EU sought to retaliate for his new tariffs. "We're gonna tax BMW". National GOP forces could exceed $10 million in spending on the race, and Saturday was the president's second recent visit to the area. We speak to Widney Brown, the managing director of policy at the Drug Policy Alliance.
Trump also has endorsed Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte's approach to the issue; Duterte's "drug war" has led to the deaths of thousands of people by extrajudicial police killings.
"I think the Democrats are losing touch with the working guys", said Bill Leskosky, a 59-year-old state transportation department employee who attended the rally with his father-in-law, a retired coal miner. And he claimed that 52 percent of women voted for him in his presidential win (it was 52 percent of white women, according to exit polling). And the race couldn't be tighter, a warning sign for the GOP no matter who wins given the deeply populist-conservative nature of Pittsburgh's suburbs and exurbs.