JACKSONVILLE — As Florida counties started sending out home ballots Thursday, the president landed in Jacksonville to reiterate the declare he’s been making to voters for half a decade: Donald Trump is combating for America.In a raucous, meandering hourlong speech given earlier than an out of doors viewers of a number of thousand, Trump repeated dozens of acquainted claims, a lot of them exaggerated or outright false.For instance: “The Republican cities don’t have trouble” with crime. (Jacksonville and Miami, that are led by Republicans, have seen spikes in murders this 12 months.)“They want to pack the court,” Trump stated, referring to a possible Democratic plan so as to add justices to the Supreme Courtroom. (Senate Democrats are, at greatest, break up on this concept.)“The Biden (health care) plan would destroy … protections for pre-existing conditions.” (It could not; the Trump administration is at present combating in courtroom to finish the Obama-era Inexpensive Care Act, which mandated these protections.)A largely maskless viewers cheered the president’s each speaking level. Packed right into a scenic vista, full with an idling Air Power One within the background, close to an airplane hangar at Jacksonville’s Cecil Airport, the group’s emotion was evident in what amounted to a homecoming for Trump. For months previous to Thursday, the coronavirus pandemic had prevented the president from holding his signature rallies in Florida.Polls present Trump is operating in a digital lifeless warmth with former Vice President Joe Biden for Florida’s essential 29 electoral faculty votes. The Biden marketing campaign put out an announcement condemning the president’s dealing with of the virus, which has killed about 14,000 Floridians.“President Trump does not have a plan, but I do — to beat COVID-19, build our economy back better, and protect and build upon the Affordable Care Act by giving Americans more choice, reducing health care costs, and making our health care system less complex to navigate,” Biden stated within the assertion.President Donald Trump speaks throughout a marketing campaign rally at Cecil Airport, Thursday in Jacksonville. [ EVAN VUCCI | AP ]Trump solely briefly touched on the American lives misplaced to the coronavirus, claiming — misleadingly — that the U.S.’ extra mortality fee is decrease than that of Europe. Nonetheless, Trump did promise a report restoration from the pandemic.“We want to get back to normal life. We’ll fully resume. The Florida tourism and hospitality industries will reach record highs,” Trump stated. “Next year will be one of the greatest years.”The president additionally spoke a couple of rash of Florida centric points: He pledged to fight leftist regimes in Latin America, from which many Floridians have fled. He stated his administration would help constitution faculties, a significant pillar of Florida’s training system. And he stated he would defend Medicaid and Medicare — though his previous budgets have known as for cuts to these applications relative to at present deliberate future spending.Earlier than the president spoke, the group enthusiastically greeted a number of distinguished Republican elected officers. U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz and Gov. Ron DeSantis aggressively made the case for Trump’s reelection.“Who wants Amy Barrett?” DeSantis stated to wild applause, referring to the conservative jurist who sits on the U.S. Courtroom of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. “We’ll see what happens. I got a pretty good idea.”That is the scene as @GovRonDeSantis takes the stage: pic.twitter.com/2MpRlMcQKd— Kirby Wilson (@KirbyWTweets) September 24, 2020
That exact concern was additionally on the thoughts of many who attended the occasion.The Rev. Jean Clark, an evangelical preacher from Jacksonville, stood outdoors the rally holding an indication that learn “Florida loves Judge Amy Barrett.” Clark stated she’d even be joyful if Trump picked Florida’s Barbara Lagoa, who sits on the U.S. Circuit Courtroom of Appeals for the 11th Circuit — additionally a finalist for the seat.Clark stated she is a specific fan of Barrett as a result of the choose is “pro life, pro life, pro life.” However her admiration for the president doesn’t finish at what she sees as his dedication to socially conservative stances.“I believe he’s ordained by God, and I believe God is going to help him again,” Clark stated of Trump.President Donald Trump speaks throughout a marketing campaign rally at Cecil Airport, Thursday in Jacksonville. [ EVAN VUCCI | AP ]Diamanni Martinez, a home painter from the Jacksonville space, stated he helps Trump as a result of he feels the president helps folks of religion and believes within the U.S. Structure.Like lots of the president’s supporters, Martinez stated the president’s penchant for controversial statements is a part of his enchantment.“He talks a lot of smack, but he backs up what he says,” Martinez stated.Trump’s newest controversy got here Wednesday, when he refused to decide to a peaceable transition of energy within the occasion of a Biden win in November. Trump was rebuked by politicians in each events for the remarks, which flew within the face of a quarter-millennium of American political precedent.But when Jacksonville’s crowd Thursday was any barometer, Trump’s supporters are behind the president. Carmen Costine, who works for a transportation firm within the Jacksonville space, stated she doesn’t imagine the president can lose in November with out rampant fraud. And if that’s the case, she stated, why ought to Trump decide to the outcomes of a probably unfair election?“I think if he wins it will probably be from cheating,” Costine stated, referring to Biden. “The illegals voting. The felons voting.”Supporters cheer for President Donald Trump at his marketing campaign rally, Thursday in Jacksonville. [ STAN BADZ | AP ]AMENDMENTS: State constitutional amendments on the 2020 poll, defined.FELONY CONVICTION? Listed below are Florida’s guidelines for registering to vote.MAIL-IN BALLOTS: So that you need to vote by mail in Florida? Right here’s what it’s essential know.POSTAL SERVICE CONCERNS: What’s happening with the U.S. Postal Service and may Florida be nervous?HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT VOTING IN FLORIDA? WE HAVE THE ANSWERS: We’ve compiled data on voter registration deadlines, guidelines for voting by mail and extra.We’re working exhausting to carry you the most recent information on the coronavirus in Florida. This effort takes quite a lot of sources to collect and replace. In case you haven’t already subscribed, please think about shopping for a print or digital subscription.