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Donald Trump Jr. stumps for father and GOP ticket in Kernersville
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Donald Trump Jr. stumps for father and GOP ticket in Kernersville

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KERNERSVILLE — Lampooning Joe Biden as ineffectual and inattentive, blasting the media and labeling Biden’s son Hunter as the center of scandal, Donald Trump Jr. whipped an enthusiastic crowd into chants of “Four More Years” in a campaign appearance on Monday night on behalf of his father.

Above all, the younger Trump returned again and again to the theme that supporters of President Donald Trump need to be making phone calls and encouraging other supporters to vote.

"Our freedoms are worth it, our children and grandchildren are worth it, but we can’t do it without you," Trump Jr. said as the crowd in Kernersville started yelling and cheering. “We can make America great again — again!”

Trump Jr. spoke from a stage set up in the back parking lot of Salem One, a printing company with locations in Winston-Salem and Kernersville.

Supporters filled more than 300 chairs for the event, part of President Trump’s campaign to keep North Carolina penciled in as a red state this November. Another 100 or so people stood in the back.

Trump Jr. ridiculed Biden for using a teleprompter, suggesting it is because "he has been on every side of every issue:

"He was pro-life before he was pro-very-late-term abortion," he said, going on to accuse Biden of being "buddies with every segregationist to walk the halls of Congress."

In a wide-ranging speech that covered many topics in a hit-and-run style, Trump Jr. warned that if conservatives think they're under fire now, "What happens if we don't win?"

Claiming that "red states" have handled the COVID-19 pandemic better than ones led by Democrats, Trump Jr. got cheers when he told the audience that people who try to open their businesses or go to church get into more trouble "than you do by burning and looting."

Aside from those who are vulnerable, Trump Jr. said, one should "live your life." 

Although some in the audience wore masks, the great majority did not — mirroring behavior at a recent rally by the President at Smith Reynolds Airport.

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Many stayed after Trump Jr. finished speaking to move toward him and get him to sign their caps or other items. 

Kernersville resident Atlas Brooks, attending the event in an NRA cap, said that the people he’s talked to are even more polarized than they were in 2016, when Trump was elected.

“On both sides there are strong feelings,” Brooks said, adding that Trump supporters fear Joe Biden more than they did Hillary Clinton.

That’s because Biden is disliked less than Clinton was, he said, and Trump supporters fear Biden’s associates will bring in more leftist policies.

The president’s son got one of his loudest cheers when he talked about Trump’s success in brokering peace deals in the Middle East.

That’s what supporter Dale Lakey said he liked as he stood in the parking lot waiting to leave, wearing his freshly-signed Trump hat.

“It used to be a powder keg, and he went over there and got all these peace things done,” Lakey said.

Trump Jr. praised his father for having "the guts to stand up to the military-industrial complex," and trying to bring an end to "endless war" in places like Afghanistan.

Elsie Herrera, who came up from Charlotte, showed off the Donald Trump campaign flag that she was able to get the president’s son to sign at the close of the rally. She predicted strong support among other Hispanics for Trump.

“He is going to be doing great,” she said.

Trump Jr. spoke in favor of Republicans in down-ticket races as well. If the president wins, he said, his task will be much harder without GOP support in Congress and in state houses.

The campaign event gave Republican state house candidates Joyce Krawiec and Jeff Zenger a short time in the spotlight to tell how Democrats are spending a lot of money to keep them out of office and flip the N.C. General Assembly from Republican to Democratic control.

Control of the next General Assembly could give whichever party wins it a chance to redraw district lines based on the results of the 2020 Census. Zenger is trying to hold a 74th District seat in the N.C. House for the GOP now held by Rep. Debra Conrad, who decided not to seek re-election. Winston-Salem Council Member Dan Besse, a Democrat, is contesting the 74th.

Krawiec is the incumbent in N.C. Senate District 31, and is being challenged by Democrat Terri LeGrand.

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@wyoungWSJ

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