Posted by News Express | 19 June 2019 | 545 times
U.S. President Donald Trump kicked off his re-election campaign at a rally in Orlando, Florida, one of the swing states that fueled his poll-defying victory in 2016.
The crowd greeted him with “USA” chants as he recalled the “movement” he started four years ago.
“It turned out to be more than just a great political campaign. It turned out to be a great political movement because of you,” the president said, echoing the same message of his first presidential run. “It’s a movement made up of people… who believe that a nation must care for its own citizens first.”
While promoting issues like the economy and border security, the president also condemned his Democratic opponents as “socialists” and “left-wing” extremists who have tried to destroy him and his family, and have “looked down” on his supporters.
The president promoted issues like border security and trade tariffs, and chastised the media and the Democrats for spotlighting the Russian issue and other controversies surrounding his presidency.
“Nobody has done what we have done in two-and-a-half years,” he said.
Tim Murtaugh, Director of Communications of the Trump-Pence 2020 Campaign, stressed Trump’s record of “promises made, promises kept”.
“When he was a candidate in 2016. He promised a lot of things he was going to lead America back to world prominence. He was going to improve the economy. And he did exactly those things. The economy is booming. America is back to its rightful place as the leader of the free world. And the president is going to be running on keeping those promises,” Murtaugh said.
From early afternoon, thousands of people have lined up to enter the 20,000-capacity venue. But many will have to watch outside on giant television screens under the downpour that has been drenching supporters and volunteers on and off all day.
Trump’s most loyal fans have camped outside the Amway Center since early Monday to claim their spot in line. Monday night, several hundred were gathered a block away from the rally venue, with the first ones in line saying they have been there since 4 a.m. They brought tents, lawn chairs and coolers full of snacks and beverages, and plenty of umbrellas to protect against the elements, including a thunderstorm that lasted about an hour in the early evening.
Many of them say they support Trump’s economic and immigration policies.
Nathan Gunn, who will be voting for the first time in 2020, said he supports Trump’s America First agenda and loves what the president is doing with “the big crisis we have in the border with people flooding in.” Gunn also likes the fact that Trump is “not politically correct.”
“People don’t really see what’s really true about him, and that’s why they hate him,” Gunn said. “They don’t really see what he's capable of, what he’s actually doing for the country.”
Maureen Bailey from Volusia County and her twin sister Laureen arrived at 6 a.m. She said she is a lifelong Republican who prior to 2016 has always supported establishment candidates. Bailey used to think that Trump’s name-calling was “unnecessary” but now finds his controversial speech “refreshing.”
“He’s just a breath of fresh air,” Bailey said. “He just gets up there and he goes off script. You just never know what’s going to come out of his mouth.”
•Excerpted from a VOA report.
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