“Make sure you get out and vote…” Estimates of up to 28,000 fired up Trump supporters attended the massive Tampa, Florida rally on Monday night cheering on the presidential nominee heading into the final two weeks of the campaign.
“Make sure you get out and vote — or this whole movement that they’re all talking about throughout the world, it won’t be the same, folks. We’re not going to do what we want to do,” Trump told the thunderous crowd at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, on the first day of early, in-person voting in Florida.
“I’m asking you to dream big — remember we used to dream big? — and imagine all the amazing things we can do for our country,” said Trump, interrupted several times with chants of “USA! USA!” and, when he spoke of “Crooked Hillary” Clinton, “Lock her up! Lock her up!”
“Real change begins with fixing our rigged and broken system.”
Trump railed against the media and the political establishment, even as leaders of Florida’s political establishment warmed up the crowd for him.
“It’s gut-check time. It’s the fourth quarter, and the game is literally tied,” said Florida GOP chairman Blaise Ingoglia of Spring Hill, making a rare appearance at a Florida Trump rally.
Only 30 people attend Tim Kaine rally:
— Trump Street Team FL (@ChatRevolve) October 24, 2016
Attorney General Pam Bondi, an early Trump supporter who has steered clear of Trump events in recent months, had the crowd repeating after her, “Eight years is enough!” and noted that she voted Monday for Trump.
Even ex-Florida State football coach Bobby Bowden, an avid Republican, made an appearance that drew the familiar FSU chant. He told the crowd he worried about the condition of America’s military and applauded Trump for promising to build it up.
“I love his slogan,” Bowden said. “I love what he said about making America great again.”
Florida is Trump’s second home, and he has little chance of winning the White House without the state’s 29 electoral votes.
“I don’t believe the polls; I think it’s going amazing,” said Richard Deleva, who attended the rally wearing a “Deplorable Lives Matter” T-shirt referencing Clinton’s comment that half of Trump’s supporters are “deplorables.”
“Our system is rigged,” Trump said several times over his 40-minute speech. “She never had a chance of being convicted even though everybody in this audience — and boy do we have a lot of people — everybody here knows she is 100 percent guilty. … The best evidence that the system is rigged is the fact that Hillary Clinton, despite her many crimes, was even allowed to run for president in the first place.”
The crowd chanted “Lock her up!” just as loudly as they jeered “dishonest” journalists at the event when Trump accused them of hiding the size of his crowd. The media, he said, is looking down on hard-working Americans who don’t share their elitist views.
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Pathetic Clinton rally:
Hillary's small rally from a few days ago in Cleveland. Cheerleaders instruct crowd behind Hillary what to cheer, etc. So pathetic! pic.twitter.com/crLXuxhss2
— Deplorable AJ (@asamjulian) October 24, 2016