Billionaire Donald J. Trump, the 2016 GOP presidential frontrunner, came, saw, and conquered the Old Pueblo on Saturday–a beautiful spring afternoon. Over 4,000 came to see Trump provide the all American red meat for which he is now famous.
America’s toughest Sheriff, Maricopa County’s Joe Arpaio, made the journey south of the Gila to introduce Trump joking to a standing ovation: “I did not know they liked me in Tucson.”
Tucson is a notorious radical hide-out at the end of the line. If not for the aerospace industry Howard Hughes brought to town 50 years ago, the feds may have given the Gadsden Purchase back a long time ago. One hundred miles north, Phoenix booms and conservatives rule the country’s fastest growing NFL city, which has moved at warp speed since Clint Eastwood rolled his armor plated bus through the downtown gauntlet in 1977.
But earlier on Saturday, anti-Trump protesters chained themselves to cars parked in the middle of the highway blocking traffic headed to Trump’s rally in Maricopa County at Fountain Hills–leading to Sheriff Arpaio arresting several of them to throw them in jail. The protests garnered the anti-Trump activists a place in the national spotlight for hours. Tucson, on the other hand, has suffered from low end liberal regression that’s stalled its economy leaving 47% living below the poverty line and its busted public school system fights battles for Mexican studies courses.
Even so, down in Tucson, organizers couldn’t muster much of an anti-Trump presence. They paid a handful of homeless guys, some local Hispanic kids, and some grizzly old hippie burn outs to beat a bongo and carry a Mexican flag. Only one guy showed up with the anarchist face mask so that is always the leading indicator. The handful who managed to get inside were so low energy and hapless the security seemed like they might actually let them stay just so the news folks could get a story.