WILDWOOD — Thousands hoping to get into President Trump's presidential campaign rally lined up in the early morning hours hoping to be one the approximately 7,500 to get inside the Wildwood Convention Hall for the 7 p.m. rally.

One purpose of the "Keep America Great" rally is to endorse 2nd District Rep. Jeff Van Drew who flipped parties from Democrat to Republican with Trump's blessing. The rally comes as the impeachment trial continues in Washington, and as Trump's administration sues New Jersey over its Immigration Trust Directive.

The Trump faithful were glad to be in Wildwood to show their support for the president.

Jasmine Morrisey from Middletown arrived on the boardwalk on Sunday night and slept outdoors for the first time.

"I wouldn't do this for anybody else that I don't have a relationship with. I can't think of another person that I would stake out three days of my life, take time out from work, take time out from my life to do this," Morrsey said.

Morrisey said she thinks Trump is "genuine" unlike any other politician and a way of connecting with people.

Bill Lardieri from Point Pleasant was motivated to support the president and Van Drew and never thought he would see a sitting president come to New Jersey. He was also an early arrival on Sunday.

"I want to be as close to my president as I can get," Lardieri said.

Rebecca Pepenella from  Burlington Township was motivated to attend because she believes Trump is a "real man" and doesn't speak like a politician.

"He really really cares for the people and he delivers. He's been doing what he said he would do," Pepenella said. She added that she enjoyed the positive atmosphere she encountered at the rally from the time she arrived on Sunday.

"It's like we're all friends here. It's been so wonderful meeting all these people," Pepenella said.

Eddie Luberski from Wildwood was excited that Trump is coming to his the town he spends his summers.

"Even if I don't get in I need to be here," Luberski  said, adding that he likes the idea of "having a businessman in charge of the country."

John Castaldi from Woodbine expects a "real spectacle" of people for and against Trump and was also impressed that a sitting president is coming to New Jersey.

Jessica Trombino from Hamilton is pleased with the patriotism she says Trump has brought back to the country during his administration which has created

"He keeps on working towards no one's goal but the American people's goals. He delivers and gives us what we want," Trombino said.

"Whether you like or hate him it's going to be huge," said Castaldi, who described himself as a Trump supporter.

Castaldi also said he was a Van Drew supporter even when he was a Democrat.

"He doesn't follow the party, he follows his heart. I've known him for a long time and I always said he's the most Republican Democrat I've seen," Castaldi said.

North Wildwood Republican Mayor Patrick Rosenello said he was on the boardwalk on Monday night and described the crowd as a "Trump festival" with food and merchandise vendors, music and some open bars and restaurant.

The mayor anticipates that his own town will benefit from the rally with sold out hotels and full restaurants.

"Any businesses open this time of year is certainly gettig an economic boost from this," Rosenello said.

Hotel in Wildwood prepares for the Trump rally (Bud McCormick)
Line on Ocean AVenue Tuesday morning for the Trump rally (Michael Symons, Townsquare Media NJ))

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

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