Elections

Why Donald Trump Jr. moved rally to Hilton Head from Beaufort and what to expect today

Donald Trump Jr. is coming to Beaufort Monday
Donald Trump Jr. is coming to Beaufort Monday Eventbrite screenshot

Donald Trump Jr. is hosting a rally on Hilton Head supporting state Rep. Katie Arrington on Monday afternoon and officials are expecting a large crowd.

The rally will begin at 4:30 p.m. at the Hilton Head Island Republican Club in the Port Royal Plaza on the north end of the island near Matthews Drive and U.S 278. Doors open at 4 p.m.

Former Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle will also be at the rally.

The rally will be held inside the club and the area will be secured by U.S. Secret Service officials, according to Republican club officials.

Trump Jr.’s rally was originally supposed to be held in Beaufort, but was moved to Hilton Head Island midday Sunday, according to previous Island Packet reporting.

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John Pastore, club president, said the event was moved to Hilton Head because Trump’s jet could not land at a runway shorter than 5,000 feet. He said that with the completion of the runway extension project at the Hilton Head Island Airport, Trump’s jet can land at the airport.

The Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office will assist with securing the area outside the club if there is overflow, Pastore said. He said the Secret Service will be at the door to the club to secure the politicians and attendees inside.

Pastore said the event has reached capacity at 500 online registrations, but only 74 people have marked themselves as “going” to the Facebook event.

The Hilton Head Republican Club Headquarters has been granted a temporary occupancy limit of 288 people for Monday’s event, according to Hilton Head Island Fire Rescue spokesperson Joheida Fister.

After the indoor space reaches that limit, attendees will be directed to stand outside and listen to the rally through a speaker system, Fister said.

When asked about how the club will handle the number of attendees, Pastore said that the club will be filled with as many people as possible, and the rest of the attendees “can stand outside.”

The event is free to attend but requires online registration. The event website states that the name on the ticket must match the name on the ticketholder’s ID.

Pastore said the event has been put together in the last 24 hours because of the change of venue, and the club is “scrambling to keep up.” When asked about potential traffic from the attendees, Pastore said that since most traffic is going off-island in the during rush hour, “we’re not worried about that kind of traffic.”

Arrington is running against Democrat Joe Cunningham for the U.S. House seat representing the Lowcountry from Hilton Head to Charleston. Arrington, a loyal supporter of President Donald Trump, beat U.S. Rep Mark Sanford in the primary this year.

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