On Saturday, an estimated 50,000 people attended a rally held by former President Donald Trump in South Carolina, which essentially took over the entire city, according to The Conservative Brief.
"Taking over the movie-set-like Main Street of a town of 3,300 in the hills of South Carolina on Saturday, Trump put on a show of force not only in his rural American stronghold but also in an early primary state where he remains dominant," Politico reported.
The report continued: “In front of a crowd local officials estimated may have reached 50,000, Trump barged onto the home-state turf of two of his primary opponents, Nikki Haley and Sen. Tim Scott.
"The size of Trump’s audience — and its fervor — was the latest ominous sign not only for them but for Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Trump’s top rival, who is desperately trying to peel off part of Trump’s base in this first-in-the-South primary state.”
Trump stated at one point during his rally, “It was hardworking patriots like you who built this country, and it is hardworking patriots like you who are going to save our country.
"2024 is our final battle. Under our leadership, the forgotten men and women will be forgotten no longer.”
Politico noted that the former president attracted a large audience from neighboring counties and other states, causing businesses to close and straining local resources in the 3-square-mile city.
Taking advantage of the city's prearranged annual Independence Day festival, Trump announced the rally two weeks in advance, following efforts by his team and support from Republican elected officials in the state to persuade the city to agree to Secret Service shutdowns along its main business strip, according to the outlet.
Politico added, “It was a sharp contrast from the event DeSantis held in South Carolina last week — a more subdued affair where he took questions in a North Augusta community center,”
In Pickens, vendors made preparations days in advance, and locals attempted to rent out parking spots in their front yards for $50. A few attendees even camped overnight outside the entrance gate.
On Saturday, the entrance line snaked through the heart of the city, while enterprising individuals sold camping chairs, water bottles, and hot dogs.
Trump's campaign labored urgently to distribute pallets of water and Gatorade to keep the crowd hydrated, according to the news source.
At approximately 11 a.m., the street was filled with enthusiastic cheers as Trump's aircraft flew overhead. The Greenville school choir, which had recently been prohibited from singing the national anthem in the rotunda of the U.S. Capitol, performed.
Despite the presence of Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who had endorsed Trump, his words were consistently drowned out by booing from the audience.
“I was open,” Tena Stark, a Pickens native who currently resides in Tennessee, said regarding the GOP primary field. “But my mind is made up now. I feel like he’s the strongest man for the job.”