Every time Biden spoke of soldiers, sailors, airmen, or Marines, he called them “warriors.” When thanking Sen. Tom Carper, Biden described him as a Navy pilot.

Biden even framed his policy priorities in terms of toughness. On foreign policy, Biden suggested the main difference was that he’d be tougher than Trump: “I don’t believe we’re a nation that bows down to Vladimir Putin, because I sure as hell will not.”

On gun control, it was the same. Biden bragged about being well-armed. “I have a 20-gauge and a 12-gauge,” Biden said at one point. He argued for magazine limits by saying nobody needs that many rounds. And he said toughness will be needed to restrict gun rights. “I’ve taken on the NRA and beaten them,” Biden said, “and I promise you, I will beat them again.”

“I don’t believe that this nation lacks the courage to take on the NRA,” Biden said in Cedar Rapids, as if the NRA were a militia.