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Trump looks to rev up his base at Daytona 500

Trump looks to rev up his base at Daytona 500


WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is out to rev up his enchantment with a key voting demographic — NASCAR followers — as he takes within the Daytona 500 on Sunday. NASCAR drivers could veer to the left throughout their journey across the oval racetrack, however their followers lean proper, which helps clarify the regularity with which GOP presidents have made their solution to the observe.Trump would be the second sitting president to attend the Daytona 500, after George W. Bush in 2004. Like Trump, he additionally attended the race throughout a presidential election yr. Republican presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush additionally visited the observe at Daytona however throughout races aside from the 500. This yr, Trump will function grand marshal and provides the command for drivers to begin their engines.Ari Fleischer, the White Home spokesman beneath George W. Bush, mentioned the go to ought to enchantment to Trump on two fronts.“There’s an actual sense of constructive, overwhelming affirmation to listen to the roar of the gang. What politician doesn’t need that?” Fleischer mentioned. “Secondly, there’s what I name the reverberation impact. Folks watching at house, who hear the roar of the gang for a president, that may drive them towards some sense of approval or fondness or liking for the president.”Simply in case anybody misses the purpose, Trump’s reelection marketing campaign will run a TV advert in the course of the Fox broadcast of the race and fly an aerial banner close to the speedway. Trump scored a coup in 2016 when Brian France, then NASCAR’s chairman and chief government, endorsed him within the presidential race. Whereas France’s endorsement was a private matter, some critics mentioned it damage NASCAR’s efforts to spice up its enchantment amongst minorities. And Trump didn’t assist issues when he repeatedly claimed he had obtained “NASCAR’s endorsement” reasonably than France’s. In 1984, Reagan turned the primary sitting president to attend a NASCAR race. That July, he began the Firecracker 400 at Daytona Worldwide Speedway, the place he gave the command, “Gents, begin your engines!” from aboard Air Pressure One. Later, the airplane landed at Daytona Worldwide Airport behind the speedway in full view of the followers. It was at that race that Richard Petty captured his historic 200th victory. Reagan caught round till the tip and even did just a few laps of radio play-by-play in the course of the race, congratulated Petty after which ate rooster with drivers, crew members, NASCAR workers and their households within the storage space.The senior Bush’s journey to Daytona occurred in 1992. As Reagan’s vice chairman, he additionally served because the honorary starter for the 25th operating of the Daytona 500.President Barack Obama’s preliminary presidential marketing campaign was offered with the chance to sponsor a automotive in a NASCAR race, however ultimately declined that probability. Nonetheless, Obama routinely invited the winners of the NASCAR Cup Collection championship to the White Home, a convention Trump has continued. Final yr, Trump took that outreach a step additional, awarding the Presidential Medal of Freedom, one of many nation’s highest civilian honors, to Roger Penske, a businessman and founding father of one of many world’s most profitable motorsports groups.Democrat Invoice Clinton didn’t get as pleasant a NASCAR reception because the GOP presidents. Throughout his go to to a NASCAR race as a candidate in September 1992, the query of his lack of Vietnam-era army service was nonetheless dogging his marketing campaign. Many followers on the Southern 500 in Darlington, South Carolina, booed and heckled him. Against this, when George W. Bush attended the Daytona 500, he obtained rock-star therapy.About 100,000 individuals are anticipated to attend this yr’s race and thousands and thousands extra will watch on tv. About 9 million individuals took in final yr’s race on tv.
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