HIALEAH, FLA. (WSVN) - All eyes are on South Florida for the Republican primary and the race for the White House. But the stage has been also set in Hialeah as former President Trump gets ready to rally there Wednesday night.
Meanwhile, his Republican rivals are set to converge in downtown Miami for the next GOP Presidential Primary debate at the Adrienne Arsht Center.
With just a day away, Republican presidential contenders are making their case for why they should be their party’s candidate. But once again, they won’t be on the same stage.
The field is staged as South Florida prepares to enter the Republican spotlight with dueling events.
Hialeah will welcome Trump to Ted Hendrick’s Stadium Wednesday night, where the GOP front-runner is prepared to declare at his rally “Florida is Trump Country,” which is a clear jab at his closest rival, Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Trump is taking a pause from his legal battles for the event.
On Tuesday night, people were already lining to hear what he has to say.
“There’s millions, just like me, across this country that will support him until he says he is finished,” said Sharon Anderson, a supporter from Tennessee.
While DeSantis is fresh off an endorsement from Gov. Kim Reynolds in the crucial caucus state of Iowa, a new University of North Florida poll shows, of likely Republican voters in the Sunshine State, 60% of voters would cast a ballot for Trump, which a steep drop to 21% for Gov. DeSantis. Former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley is at 6%, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is at 2% and entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy sitting at just 1%.
Those last four, along with South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, will face off on stage, 10 miles away, in the third Republican presidential debate.
Signs were up and barricades were built along downtown Miami for the prime time event that Trump will once again skip.
“Here with the people, we are the ones who are going to put him in office and a debate only serves, one purpose, and that is to let a politician and candidate explain what they’re going to do,” Anderson said. “Donald Trump proved what he is going to do in four years.”
That sentiment didn’t stop Ramaswamy from attempting to make in-roads along Calle Ocho Tuesday night. He acknowledged Trump’s absent from the debate stage.
“There are only two America first candidates in this race, that is Trump and myself, but it is going to take a leader from the next generation with fresh legs to actually reach the next generation and reunite this country, and I think I can do that better than anyone else in this race and I think we are going to be successful,” he said.
While Republicans are ready to go toe to toe, President Joe Biden’s campaign unleashed a wave of criticism with fellow Democrats.
“They’ve taken away our freedom to make our own health care decisions, they stripped us of our right to be safe in our own communities, they banned books and attempted to rewrite American history,” said Nikki Fried, chairwoman of the Florida Democratic party. “Today, Florida is no longer free.”
A lot of traffic is expected both near the Adrienne Arsht Center and at Ted Hendricks Stadium in Hialeah.
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