Demonstrators hoped to ‘send a message’ during Trump’s Jacksonville visit

While thousands of supporters lined up early for President Donald Trump’s rally in Jacksonville, a group of demonstrators also gathered with signs and flags outside Cecil Airport.

Some of those demonstrators told News4Jax they made their way inside the rally, saying they disguised themselves as supporters of the president. Kevin Conner said he and the others were escorted out as they held their fists high and wore Black Lives Matter masks.

“They said, ‘We are hired by the President to dis-invite or un-invite people that he wouldn’t want here. It’s a private event and we’re going to try to arrest you if you try to come back in,’" Conner said.

When asked why they went inside, Conner responded: “To send a message. I believe we are heading super fast into an autocratic dictatorship. Yesterday we had Trump saying again, the third time, I can’t promise a peaceful transition of power.”

Up the road, a group stood next to an inflatable baby that was modeled after the president.

Larry Douglas Snyder said he disagrees with how President Trump has handled the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Two hundred thousand dead. Lies, lies, lies. That’s it. Trump told lies and 200,000 people died because of it. That’s a huge deal," Snyder said.

LINK: President Trump visits Jacksonville for ‘Great American Comeback’ rally

Despite the opposition, thousands of the president’s supporters from across the country waited in line for hours to see the president.

David Joiner dressed as Abraham Lincoln.

“He’s (Trump’s) been a great president. I’ve made more money and saved more money in the last four years than I’ve ever had in my whole entire life," Joiner said.

The demonstration remained peaceful.