Supporters who began lining up in the snow a day ahead of the rally appeared to have forgiven Mr. Trump — if they ever blamed him — for maligning New Hampshire as a “a drug-infested den” in a 2017 private call with the president of Mexico, the transcript of which was published by The Washington Post.
Before leaving Washington to fly here, Mr. Trump expressed his admiration for authoritarian countries like China, where drug dealers are executed. “Countries with a powerful death penalty, with a fair but quick trial, they have very little if any drug problem,” he said. “That includes China.”
The president’s daughter Ivanka Trump, a senior White House adviser, joined him in Manchester after attending a “Cops for Trump” event in Portsmouth, with Vice President Mike Pence. A team of congressional allies, including Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Senator Rick Scott of Florida and Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, were also on hand, and plan to greet voters at polling stations on Tuesday.
Mr. Trump’s 2016 primary victory in New Hampshire, coupled with Mr. Sanders’s trouncing of Mrs. Clinton in the Democratic race, were seen at the time as a sign of the power of two establishment-wrecking candidates. Part of Mr. Trump’s challenge this time around will be channeling the same outsider energy from the seat of the presidency.
Mr. Trump’s campaign is now focused on Mr. Sanders as the candidate it would most want to face in a general election.
Mr. Trump has not, in the past, been willing to bend to the traditional politicking that New Hampshire voters expect. In 2016, he grumbled to audiences in the state about the time he had to spend in the car to get from one event to another. And he bypassed the traditional flesh-pressing that New Hampshire voters expect from candidates trying to win their votes, instead flying in and out of the state on his private jet and sticking to jumbo rallies.
His campaign style has not changed. Mr. Trump outsourced the diner meet-and-greets to Mr. Pence, who dutifully stopped by Airport Diner in Manchester, N.H., on Monday, where he and Ms. Trump sat with a family eating mozzarella sticks for an early dinner.