President Donald Trump was greeted with a warm welcome and loud cheers from the crowd during his Saturday, Nov. 9, attendance of University of Alabama’s football game against Louisiana State University.
The president sat one tier above the field with First Lady Melania Trump, where he waved at fans while smiling and giving thumbs-up several times as the gesture was returned with Alabama fans enthusiastically waving their red and white pompoms and chanted “USA! USA!”
The Guardian reported there were very slight signs of political sentiment on campus, but bipartisan complaints from attendees for the painstakingly long lines to see the game as a result of enhanced security.
The “lingering boos,” as one reporter said, were drowned out by the overwhelmingly loud cheering for the first couple.
This was in stark contrast to the president’s attendance at the Nov. 3 UFC title match at Madison Square Garden in New York, where he was met with cheers but also obscene gestures and salacious chants from the audience.
The University of Alabama’s campus student government association warned students beforehand against being disruptive, but also told them that they were nevertheless allowed to exercise their First Amendment rights.
President Trump won 63% of the Alabama vote in the 2016 presidential election, while Hillary Clinton scored merely 34% of the electoral votes.
Roughly a mile away from the stadium, a 20-foot towering inflatable protest balloon depicting a caricature version of the president in a diaper was set up in a nearby park but was quickly stabbed and deflated, according to The Associated Press. The balloon, intended to make a mockery of President Trump, is reported to be seen at protests around the world.
One woman was reportedly seen holding a sign that said she had sold her ticket and donated the funds to the Democratic Party, according to The Guardian.
But the vast majority of signs at the event were pro-Trump, with flags emblazoned with “Trump 2020” and banners with “Keep American Great Trump 2020” written across them.
A patriotic woman wore a large MAGA hat and held a sign that read “Make BAMA #1 Again.”
President Trump and the first lady waved to the crowd during halftime, paying tribute to each branch of the military as the Alabama marching band played “America the Beautiful” and lined up to form the letters USA.
A huge American flag was spread open over the field at the end of the tribute, which was met with a thunderous round of applause and cheers.