About 100 members of the Utah County Republican Party eagerly watched and cheered alongside a video feed Tuesday as President Donald Trump announced his plans to run for reelection in 2020.
“It’s on, everybody,” Vice President Mike Pence said via a video feed of the event. “Time for round two.”
The Utah County group gathered at TribeHouse at University Place in Orem Tuesday evening for the watch party, many sporting red “Make America Great Again” hats and holding 2020 campaign signs.
Trump spoke from Orlando, where he took the stage to chants of “U-S-A,” boasted about his work with the economy and took shots at Democratic opponents.
“The fact is the American dream is back, it is bigger and better and stronger than ever before,” Trump said via the videofeed.
The Orem crowd cheered along to key moments of the speech, such as a moment when Trump discussed fighting the Islamic State group, talked about moving the United States embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and when he brought up his plans for a border wall. The group grew passionate when Trump mentioned socialism, and they joined in with Florida chants of “lock her up.”
It can be tricky to gather crowds on a Tuesday night, when people typically have other commitments, said Stewart Peay, the chair of the Utah County Republican Party. He said it can be difficult to drum up support, especially when the general election is still more than a year away.
“We are really pleased,” Peay said.
Peay said the Utah County Republican Party is working to get more locals involved, which can be difficult in a county with many college students and people who can grow politically apathetic due to the Republican Party’s domination in city and government offices.
He wants to see more people getting passionate about politics and voting, and was happy with the diversity in ages present at the watch party.
“These aren’t the party regulars who are here tonight,” Peay said.
The group gathered early in the evening to wave signs and take a photo that would be sent to the Trump campaign. Carolina Herrin, the vice chair of the Utah County Republican Party, said the organization wanted to gather a large crowd to show support for the reelection campaign.
“We just want to make sure as Republicans we are supporting our president,” she said.
She said she’s excited about Trump’s platforms, such as entrepreneurship and secure borders. Herrin said there’s a lot of Utah County support for Trump.
“We’re a Republican county, and we thrive because we’re Republican,” she said.
Patrick Ketchum, the public relations and media officer for the Utah County Republican Party, said the party has strong ties with college Republican groups and is working to get others motivated.
“President Trump stands for some of the values that makes Utah special,” Ketchum said.