This story was originally published by Candace McCowan of our sister station WFLA.
SARASOTA, FL (WFLA) – Record crowds are expected to show up at Robart’s Arena in Sarasota Saturday for a Donald Trump. “I don’t think Sarasota’s ever seen anything like this, I think there will be over 10,000 at the rally tomorrow,” said Joe Gruters who is Florida Donald Trump for President Co-Chairman.
“It’s almost like a snowball that’s rolling down the mountain and it’s not stopping because he’s picking up more and more support,” said Gruters.
Trump’s support seems to be strong despite more controversial comments this week, this time about a disabled reporter. Critics say that Trump was mocking the reporter.
“Certainly there are a lot of people who want to dislodge him as the leader of this Republican primary contest, especially members of the media,” said Gruters.
The question remains if Trump’s comments are impacting voter opinion.
“He’s a draw everywhere he goes, people are just curious who is this person really just turning politics upside down. His support really isn’t growing, he’s pretty stable and starting to slip in some of the states that come ahead of us in the primary,” said Dr. Susan MacManus.
“It’s going to be hard to beat him if some of these other candidates don’t get widdled down out of the field or there’s always that chance that he might make that one last statement that drives people away as they go vote,” said MacManus.
Meantime, while Trump supporters are expected to line up early, there will also be protesters like Junior Salazar.
“I’m of Mexican descent so we were the first on the block to get hit by the remarks. It seems to be getting progressively worse and now he’s attacking people with disabilities and that just blows my mind,” said Salazar from the United Nations Organization. They are one of two groups that will be gathered outside of the Trump event Saturday.