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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Trump supporters resolute amid latest controversies, but some worry evident

John Gervasoni outside the Donald Trump rally in Daytona Beach

Alex Leary | Times

John Gervasoni outside the Donald Trump rally in Daytona Beach



DAYTONA BEACH - Hundreds of people are already spilling the Ocean Center arena for a Donald Trump rally and it paints a stark contrast with the chaos depicted in the media and among top Republicans. Trump's fans are mostly unshaken by the string of controversies, involving the feud with the Muslim parents of the fallen Army Capt. Humayun Khan.

"It's everyone being too sensitive again in America,” said John Gervasoni, 51, of Daytona Beach. “Do you know how many people of different races have died? They're not up there trying to be the focus. (The Khans) just want the publicity. It's the Democrats' way of trying to trick the American people.

"I stand by him no matter what," Gervasoni added. "He can make America great again and bring back jobs. The country is crumbling. Trump gets things done. He's not a bought and paid for politician. Anyone who goes into politics to get rich like the Clintons shouldn't be in politics.”

Elaine Deblauw, 58 of Port Orange, called the called the Khan uproar “a big engineering job by the Democrats. Look at the other side, we have the parents of Benghazi. It’s the media making the big deal about this. I’ve changed my channel many times."

An immigrant from Brazil, Deblauw she supports him over his tough approach to those who come to the U.S. illegally. She also likes his outspokenness. “Everybody says he’s not polite. But it’s because he’s spontaneous. He’s not looking for good, beautiful words. What he’s thinking is exactly what he says. The politicians use beautiful words with zero actions."

Still, others said Trump needs to stay on message or he'll lose less-than-hardcore supporters, including fans of Bernie Sanders and Democrats not thrilled with Hillary Clinton.

"I tweet him every day and say, 'I love you. I'm behind you but stick to the issues,' " said Barbara Rowles, 68, of Ormond Beach. "I want him to shut up about the silly things. He can't take everything personally."

[Last modified: Wednesday, August 3, 2016 1:04pm]


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