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Trump supporters wave to the motorcade carrying Donald Trump to a fundraiser on Elm street in Beverly Hills on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)
Trump supporters wave to the motorcade carrying Donald Trump to a fundraiser on Elm street in Beverly Hills on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)
Clara Harter
UPDATED:

Donald Trump on Friday, June 7, to attend a Beverly Hills campaign reception as part of a through the Bay Area, Los Angeles and Orange County.

This was his first fundraising tour after being in New York, a that has riled up Republicans and led to a historic surge in campaign contributions. Now he hopes to capitalize on this momentum to rake in big dollars at Friday’s fundraiser as well as at a Saturday event in Newport Beach.

At around 3 p.m., a crowd of Trump supporters gathered on the corner of Sunset Boulevard and Delfern Drive in Beverly Hills to await the passage of the former president’s motorcade. People waved giant American and Israeli flags, donned Trump hats and cheered into bullhorns.

Trump’s motorcade drove by with an escort from the California Highway Patrol around 4 p.m. At the sight of the motorcade, the crowd exploded into cheers and chanted, “We want Trump!”

“My heart was beating so hard and I was so, so excited to see him drive by,” said Beverly Hills resident Michelle Toumari. “I was about to cry knowing that he’s about to be our next president.”

Sherman Oaks resident Monty Delhartz brought a life-size cardboard cut out of Trump with him.

“It’s so exciting that he’s visiting, I can’t wait to see him drive by,” he said shortly before Trump arrived. Delhartz said he’s looking forward to helping reelect Trump in November and “return this country back to normal” by bringing down crime and the cost of living.

“The inflation is out of control,” he said. “You’ve got to make up your mind whether you want to pay your utility bills or you want heat this day.”

  • Trump supporters gather along Sunset Blvd. hoping to get a...

    Trump supporters gather along Sunset Blvd. hoping to get a glimpse of Donald Trump as he heads to a fundraiser on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • A lone Trump protestor takes on Trump supporters outside of...

    A lone Trump protestor takes on Trump supporters outside of a fundraiser on Elm street in Beverly Hills on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Monty Deharz of Sherman Oaks waits along Sunset Blvd. hoping...

    Monty Deharz of Sherman Oaks waits along Sunset Blvd. hoping to get a glimpse of Donald Trump as he heads to a fundraiser on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Trump supporters support Donald Trump outside of a fundraiser on...

    Trump supporters support Donald Trump outside of a fundraiser on Elm street in Beverly Hills on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Trump supporters support Donald Trump outside of a fundraiser on...

    Trump supporters support Donald Trump outside of a fundraiser on Elm street in Beverly Hills on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Donald Trump dinner guests look on at a lone Trump...

    Donald Trump dinner guests look on at a lone Trump protestor outside of a fundraiser on Elm street in Beverly Hills on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Trump supporters support Donald Trump outside of a fundraiser on...

    Trump supporters support Donald Trump outside of a fundraiser on Elm street in Beverly Hills on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Trump supporters wave to the motorcade carrying Donald Trump to...

    Trump supporters wave to the motorcade carrying Donald Trump to a fundraiser on Elm street in Beverly Hills on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Trump supporter D Lynn waits along Sunset Blvd hoping to...

    Trump supporter D Lynn waits along Sunset Blvd hoping to get a glimpse of Donald Trump as he heads to a fundraiser in Los Angeles on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Trump supporters gather along Sunset Blvd. hoping to get a...

    Trump supporters gather along Sunset Blvd. hoping to get a glimpse of Donald Trump as he heads to a fundraiser on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Trump supporters gather along Sunset Blvd. hoping to get a...

    Trump supporters gather along Sunset Blvd. hoping to get a glimpse of Donald Trump as he heads to a fundraiser on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Trump supporters gather along Sunset Blvd. hoping to get a...

    Trump supporters gather along Sunset Blvd. hoping to get a glimpse of Donald Trump as he heads to a fundraiser on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • A loneTrump protestor, left, and a Trump supporter outside of...

    A loneTrump protestor, left, and a Trump supporter outside of a fundraiser on Elm street in Beverly Hills on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Trump supporters gather along Sunset Blvd. hoping to get a...

    Trump supporters gather along Sunset Blvd. hoping to get a glimpse of Donald Trump as he heads to a fundraiser on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

  • Donald Trumps motorcade passes by supporters along Sunset Blvd. as...

    Donald Trumps motorcade passes by supporters along Sunset Blvd. as Trump heads to a fundraiser on Friday, June 7, 2024. (Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily ɫ̳/SCNG)

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Beverly Hills resident Shiva Bagheri also highlighted inflation under Biden’s leadership as a key reason why many people are supporting Trump.

“Now that they see their pocketbook under Trump, and then their pocketbook under Biden, people are waking up,” she said. “They are saying, ‘Wow, the Democrats are really screwing us over’.”

Bagheri added, “We are the highest taxed state in the country and what are we getting from it? High crime, bad infrastructure, indoctrination in schools and open borders.”

She also highlighted antisemitism on college campuses as a reason many Jewish residents of Beverly Hills will be supporting Trump in November.

The Trump fundraiser took place at the private residence of Lee Samson on North Elm Drive. Samson is a board member of the Republican Jewish Coalition and owner of a chain of nursing homes. He previously hosted Trump for a fundraiser in 2019 that raised $5 million.

“Trump’s got a lot of supporters out here, and we’re expecting massive numbers at the rallies,” said Will Donohue, president of the College Republicans of America in an earlier interview.

“The grassroots has been seriously energized by the outcome of the verdict a few days ago and I think the general consensus of our grassroots here in California is the same nationally: they don’t believe this was a fair trial,” he added.

Donohue said Beverly Hills is a natural place for Trump to visit because many of its residents are fans of his and as the capital of Israel. The city is also home to two of Los Angeles’ rare red voting precincts where a majority of voters supported Trump in the 2020 election.

While local Trump lovers were expected to be loud and proud at Friday’s rally, regional Republican representatives have been much more muted in their response to his SoCal stop.

Neither Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Santa Clarita, nor Rep. Michelle Steel, R-Seal Beach, responded to the Daily ɫ̳’ request for comment about Trump’s visit or recent court verdict. Both congress members are up for election in battleground districts that could play a key role in determining which party controls the House come January.

Steel has not spoken publicly about the verdict, while Garcia initially declined multiple news outlets’ requests for comment but gave one to a reporter in D.C. on Monday. When asked whether he is concerned about having a convicted felon at the top of the ticket he said, “No. I think the American people saw what happened in New York, they saw what were typically misdemeanors being elevated to 34 felonies.”

Both candidates’ have drawn harsh criticism from Democratic leaders.

“Ultimately, Republicans like Mike Garcia and Michelle Steel are stuck between a rock and a far-right place,” said Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee spokesperson Dan Gottleib. “They made their bed with Trump, and now they’ll have to justify to California voters how comfortable they are undermining law and order alongside the 34-time convicted elephant in the room. Steel’s silence and Garcia’s embrace are incredibly telling.”

Regional Republicans, on the other hand, have been more understanding of their reticence to speak out.

“A number of Republicans in swing districts in California win because of people who split the ticket, so they will vote for Biden and then for them,” said Jon Fleischman, former executive director of the California Republican Party. “Thus they all need to have their own local strategies on how to keep the focus on the issues that matter to these swing voters.”

This sentiment was echoed by Donohue, who said he recognizes that both candidates have reason to be concerned about political retribution from their commentary on Trump.

“As far as actual input on the Trump trial, I think a lot of them need to do what they need to do to win reelection,” he said. “There’s a lot of consultants that have ideas about what’s best for poll numbers and how they’re going to perform in their district. I think it’s imperative that we keep the house.”

While SoCal residents shouldn’t expect to see Garcia or Steel campaigning for Trump this weekend, Garcia has endorsed Trump for reelection and Steel signed on as a delegate for Trump in the presidential primary.

Residents can, however, expect to see more of Trump in the coming months as he seeks to collect California cash to spend in swing states.

“California is one of a handful of key economic engines that drive a GOP presidential campaign,” said Tim Clark, who headed Trump’s 2016 campaign in the West. “Southern California and the Bay Area are particularly strong in fundraising for the Republican nominee, and with many tech CEOs coming out strongly in favor of funding President Trump’s campaign, it’s clear that the cancel-culture dam has broken.”

Biden is also expected to make out West, the soonest of which comes next weekend when he will at the Peacock Theatre in downtown Los Angeles.

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