Trump fundraiser in New Jersey draws hundreds of protestors
LAWRENCEVILLE — As Donald Trump supporters stood outside the New Jersey National Guard Armory to hear the Republican candidate speak at a fundraiser for state Republicans, hundreds of protestors lined the street chanting "Dump Trump!"
"No Hate in the Garden State" and "Dump Trump" were the demonstrator's main themes.
Several organizations helped arrange the protest, including the New Jersey Citizen Action, New Jersey Working Families Alliance, New Jersey Sierra Club and the Amalgamated Transit Union. An airplane sponsored by New Jersey Citizen Action flew overhead displaying a banner that read "Make New Jersey Great Again. #DumpChristieTrump."
As a daughter of immigrants, Ananilia Mejia, director of New Jersey Working Families, said she rejects the "politics of hate" against Mexian-Americans and Muslim-Americans that Trump has run on.
"I'm really disappointed in our governor for siding with someone like that when he represents one of the most diverse states in the nation," Mejia said.
Holding up a sign reading "Make NJ Great Again," 21-year-old Karlio Almeda, a member of New Jersey Citizen Action, said Trump's comments about Muslims and "recklessness" motivated him to protest.
"Trump has distinguished himself as a misogynist and his impending nomination is a testament to the Republican strategy to use extreme voices to elevate divisive campaigns," Almena said.
Several of the Republican candidate's supporters displayed their own pro-Trump signs while standing in the crowd of protestors. Almeda made a point to talk to them.
"We may have differences in opinion, but we both still want to make our country greater. Despite our differences in policy, we can have a healthy dialogue," Almeda said.
Lawrenceville resident and Trump supporter Mike Girard showed up to the protest because he said the country "needs a change" and politicians need to stop "growing the government."
Girard said he could not afford to attend the fundraiser. The price of admission was $200, which will go towards reducing Gov. Chris Christie's presidential campaign debt.
"I'm just a regular working guy," Girard said. "Two hundred bucks? I go for free. That's a lot of money."