PHILADELPHIA — Several thousand people gathered at the Neshoba County Fair Tuesday afternoon to hear Donald Trump Jr. talk about his father’s candidacy for president.
“This isn’t a campaign anymore, this is a movement,” Trump said. “You have proven that today here in Mississippi. Wow.”
Trump spoke for about five minutes, referring to his father’s position on several issues and expressing his appreciation for Mississippi’s support. (Donald J. Trump won the Mississippi Republican presidential primary earlier this year.) He even remarked on appearing on the same stage from which Ronald Reagan kicked off his 1980 presidential campaign at the Neshoba County Fair.
Massive Trump signs and handmade banners hung from many balconies of the fair’s famous cabins, and droves of fairgoers wore “Trump/Pence” apparel. Some even donned Trump masks and capes. One cabin behind the stage where Trump spoke bore a handmade sign that read “Trump Tower.”
Fred Poole, 68, from Meridian, wore a Trump T-shirt.
“I drove here for the day to see Trump,” he said. “I’ve seen many political candidates at the fair over the years, including Reagan. But I can’t think of one I’ve been more excited about.”
Trump arrived at the fairgrounds around 3 p.m. and stopped at numerous cabins with Gov. Phil Bryant and U.S. Rep. Gregg Harper before making his way to the horse track Grandstand for a speech around 4 p.m.
There, a couple of thousand Trump supporters gathered, initiating “Trump! Trump! Trump!” and “USA” chants while patriotic songs blared from the loudspeakers.
“Many people have said my father is an unlikely voice for the people,” Trump said. “He’s actually speaking for you. He’s giving a voice to the people who have made this country great.”
The fairgrounds weren’t totally a Trump festival. One cabin displayed a pro Hillary Clinton sign — though it was located a few doors from a “Hillary for Prison” sign.
Fairgoer Kelli Nichols said people on opposite political sides are polite with each other.
“It’s like any other value in the South. We take our sports seriously. We take our religion seriously and we take our politics seriously,” Nichols said.