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Donald Trump fans flock to Quaker Steak & Lube for NE primaries watch party

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Pinellas County Donald Trump supporters were out in droves for last night’s Quaker Steak & Lube New England primaries watch party.

Half the restaurant was blocked off for the event, which was led by Trump’s Pinellas County Co-Chair Nick LaRosa, who said he was under strict orders not to give interviews to the media when approached by with questions.

There was standing room only by the time things kicked off at 7:30 p.m. though, with the overwhelming majority of the crowd being white and middle-aged or older.

Throughout the evening “Trump” chants were frequent, especially each time news came in about the real estate mogul and political outsider winning another state.

Boos were rather prevalent as well, mainly whenever Fox News — the only channel any TV was tuned in to — showed Hillary Clinton or Ted Cuz.

Of course, overall, it was a good night for Trump. He came out on top — by a good margin too — in all five states up for grabs last night: Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island.

Thanks to last night’s victories, Trump, the clear Republican front-runner for some time now, has won a total of 954 delegates — 110 of which were earned during the New England primaries.

Cruz, on the other hand, Trump’s closest competitor, has nabbed a total of 562, having received just three last night.

In total, 1,237 delegates are needed to officially nab the Republican nomination.

However, while supporters were paying keen attention to their favorite candidate’s delegate count last night, the handful that spoke with had plenty to say about some of Trump’s more infamous plans for office, should he get elected.

“If we don’t have any wall, if we don’t have any borders, we don’t have a country,” said John Novakowski of Largo. “They [immigrants] are taking all our jobs away — sending these jobs over seas. So I don’t feel safe here. Obama’s let everyone in. If he [Trump] builds that wall, you’re going to see all the drugs stop. And you’re going to see a lot safer country here.”

In a nutshell, Trump’s plan is to build a massive wall along the 1,954-mile-long Mexican-American border which spans four states, and have Mexico pay for it. A claim which former Mexican President Vicente Fox has been very adamant about opposing, saying he’s “not going to pay for that f — king wall.” Trump, however, has stated in the past that he’d be willing to engage in a trade war with Mexico, one of America’s two biggest trade partners (the other being China), if they don’t cough up the dough, which, according to CNN, would cost upward of $10 billion.

Another Trump supporter at last night’s watch party, Sonny Showman, of St. Petersburg, thinks Trump’s hard line on ISIS is the right move.

“ISIS and all these other filthy pigs that are coming to intrude […] Trump’s our answer,” said Showman.

In the past, Trump has declared he would “bomb the sh*t out of them [ISIS]” and then go in and “take the oil,” from the oil fields in Iraq and Syria that ISIS has taken and used to fund its terror organization.

He’s also on the record as saying he would, “take out their [terrorist’s] families,” in his attempt to fight terrorism.

Clinton, the clear Democratic front-runner, also picked up a good amount of delegates last night — 204 in total — winning every state up for grabs other than Rhode Island, which she lost to Bernie Sanders.

Clinton’s overall delegate count is now up to 2,151. While Sanders trails quite a bit, with only 1,338 total delegates earned.

A total of 2,382 delegates will be needed to secure the Democratic presidential nomination.

Devon Crumpacker is a Tampa Bay based writer and reporter for Extensive Enterprises Media. He primarily covers Pinellas County politics for, but also makes time to write the occasional bar review for He lives in St. Petersburg with his fiance, Sydney. To contact, e-mail, or visit his Twitter page @DevonCrumpacker.

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