President Trump Makes Historic Visit to Richmond
Students and local residents brave long waits and traffic to see President Trump.
October 19, 2018
President Trump Impresses Richmond, KY Crowd
On Saturday, October 13, President Donald J. Trump held a rally supporting Andy Barr, who is running for Congress, in Richmond, Kentucky. The rally began at 7:30 p.m. when Trump arrived, after just having met with freed pastor Andrew Brunson in the Oval Office. Around 7,000 people sat inside the Alumni Coliseum at Eastern Kentucky University, but thousands were not permitted in. Participants were seen wearing all red, but outfits varied from suits to shorts. To pass the time, chants such as “Overturn Roe v Wade!” and “Drain the swamp!” overcame the crowds.
Senator Rand Paul was the first to speak, mainly discussing how great Kentucky is. He then introduced Congressman Andy Barr. Barr explained his platforms and compared them with those of his opponent, Amy McGrath. He explained how her platforms do not match Kentucky’s needs. One of the key policies he discussed regarded cutting taxes.
Following Andy Barr, President Trump took the platform. Trump’s obvious main purpose in being there was to endorse Andy Barr, so much of his speech advocated for Barr’s conservative ideas and how he is and has been the best fit for Kentucky. He discredited Barr’s opponent, Amy McGrath, claiming she was a liar and unfit for Congress. Trump also did not shy away from questioning the opposing party, and explained how much of the Democrat’s actions are part of the nation’s many issues.
Trump also spent much of time expressing his love for America, and as his trademark, how great America is. He told personal stories about positive times with Senators Mitch McConnell, Rand Paul, as well as Congressman Andy Barr. The President was well aware of his conservative audience and more right-winged location, and discussed almost every conservative topic. He also conveyed his tremendous personality through his anecdotes and speech. Those who participated in the rally noted how his speech was everything they would expect him to say, and nothing came as a surprise.
Many LCA students partook in the president’s arrival and described positive experiences. Reagan Newman, a senior, was present at the rally and explained her experience. “It was inspiring being in a room with over 6,500 people with similar ideas and beliefs as mine. I waited 6 hours in line and every minute was worth it.” Senior Samuel Martin also commented on the amount of people there. “It was packed and I didn’t expect there to be that many people there.”
Rosemary Cruse, also a senior, went to the rally as well. “Being able to say that I have been in the same room as the President of the United States is so cool, being that close to someone who will go down in history! The entire experience is something I will never forget!”
Although there was talk of many protesters at the rally, those who were actually attended the rally disagree with that claim. They said that they saw only a few protesters and commented that they were barely noticed.
Whether or not Trump’s trip to Richmond will affect the outcome of the congressional election coming up in just a few short weeks, his visit had nothing short of an immense impact on central Kentucky residents.
Crowds and Traffic Accompany Trump’s Visit to Richmond
“Donald Trump can suck my left toe.”
“Donald Trump is the greatest president of all time.”
These two statements by LCA students show that there are conflicting views on our 45th president. However the President was in the great city of Richmond on Saturday October 13. This was the first time that a sitting President has been in Richmond. Regardless of their personal opinions, many residents agree it was a great event for the small town. The great event came with some costs. Many complained about the interstate being shut down and highway 25 was very congested. The Eastern Bypass also was affected, with traffic backed up past the Meijer supermarket. Many people lined up and watched in the Richmond Centre to see the President’s convoy on route from Bluegrass Airport to the Alumni Colosseum. My Tracy Wheatley was one of these people. She described how many felt when she said, “I thought it was very exciting.” “There were a lot of people watching as he came in.” Their only complaint seemed to be “I didn’t have a good enough camera.” Karen Hester was also there. She said, “the most exciting presidential experience I’ve had just seeing him drive by, and I have shook Bill Clinton and Al Gore’s hand.” She said, you could barely see President Trump, as he drove by but you could pick him out due to his hair.
Several students made the trip to Richmond for the rally. They took note of the crowds as well. Senior Blane Hardin said, “it was cold and it took forever to get in.” Junior Davis McIntire said “I waited for hours to be cut off about 15 people short.”
Despite the crowds and the long waits, the rally was a success. President Trump provided updates on his policies and encouraged voters to turn out for incumbent Congressman Andy Barr in the upcoming election. Congressman Barr is facing Democrat hopeful Amy McGrath. Former Vice President Joe Biden spoke for her at a rally in Bath County on Friday Oct 12.