JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Florida will become the focal point for the 2020 race for the White House on Tuesday when President Donald Trump will visit Orlando, where there will be a rally to formally launch his reelection campaign.
The president should have plenty of Duval County support. Republicans in Jacksonville met Monday night and couldn't contain their excitement about Tuesday's rally.
"We are on the eve of a historic event in our party and in our country's history," said Duval County Republican Party Chairman Dean Black.
Black said it’s about support for a president who these people support in unity. Several people plan to attend the rally, with a bus chartered to drive down Tuesday.
News4Jax spoke with people traveling Monday evening.
"You know, we are so excited. Everyone is excited. We're leaving tonight to go down so that we can miss some of the traffic, hopefully," Duval County Republican Elizabeth Bentley said. "We have our hotel room for two nights and we're going to go party for Trump."
"I'm so excited. We're going to pack up the car and we're going to head down I-4 and we're going to be there to meet this wonderful president that supports our veterans," Duval County Republican Kathy Sisbarro said. "We are so blessed and honored to have the opportunity to see him."
News4Jax political analyst Rick Mullaney said the decision to launch a reelection campaign makes sense in Florida, and so does the timing.
"The president filed a long time ago. Everyone knows he's running. Of course, this is the official kickoff from his standpoint -- he wants everybody to energize his base and energized the campaign," Mullaney said. "Make no mistake about it, if Donald Trump wants to be reelected, he has to cover Florida. There's no doubt about it. It's the 29 electoral votes, but more importantly than that, it's a swing state and really the biggest prize."
While the rally starts at 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Amway Center, supporters who have already lined up will be able to get in the doors starting at 4 p.m. Tuesday.
Jacksonville Young Republicans will have a Trump Campaign kickoff watch party Tuesday night. The event begins at 7:15 p.m. at Mudville Grille at 13770 Beach Blvd. For more information, click here.