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Trump supporters block major New Jersey highway ahead of 2020 election

‘We shut it down, baby! We shut it down!’ man shouts in video of vehicle blockade

Griffin Connolly
Sunday 01 November 2020 20:43 GMT
Trump Jr tells supporters 'give Kamala Harris a nice Trump Train welcome'
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Hundreds of Donald Trump supporters hopped in their cars and congregated on New Jersey’s Garden State Parkway on Sunday, shutting down lanes to show they back the president.

“We shut it down, baby! We shut it down!” a man shooting video of the scene can be heard saying in a clip posted to Twitter.

The 16-second video pans over three express lanes near Cheesequake, New Jersey, in the middle of the state, that are at a complete standstill as cars and trucks with Trump 2020 flags beep their horns and people mill around.

Over the past several weeks, Trump supporters have criss-crossed US highways in convoys of often thousands of cars to promote the Republican president, who faces Democratic nominee Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election in  just two days time.

A similar “Trump Train” of so-called “MAGA trucks” paraded down the highway in Charleston, South Carolina, last weekend.

And the FBI has launched an investigation into an incident in Texas on Friday, described by some outlets as an “ambush” and “MAGA truck attack,” which led to at least one collision. A large group of Trump supporters  surrounded a campaign bus of Democratic candidate Joe Biden on a highway in the Longhorn State, forcing the former vice president to cancel his planned event there over fears for his safety.

The president tweeted a video of the incident, showing pickup trucks and large SUVs with Trump flags on all sides of the Biden campaign bus as it was driving on the I-35 in Hays County.

Writing in all-caps, on Saturday Mr Trump tweeted along with the video: “I LOVE TEXAS!”

Several people on Twitter complained of being late to work on Sunday due to the congestion caused by the parked cars in the express lanes in New Jersey.

Matt K, 21, who works at a liquor store in Woolbridge, New Jersey, told The Independent  he was 45 minutes late to work due to bumper-to-bumper traffic between Exits 117 and 129.

His commute usually takes him no more than 15 minutes. On Sunday, it took him nearly an hour.

“I honestly thought it was a really bad accident at first but towards Exit 120 I started seeing a lot of cars with Trump 2020 flags hanging out of their windows,” said Matt, who is also a full-time student at Rutgers University.

Other people on Twitter pointed out that conservatives for years have denounced political and civil rights demonstrators that have sought to disrupt the flow of traffic by creating picket lines on major streets and highways.

New Jersey, which has been a Democratic bastion for decades, is not expected to be much of a political battleground this time around either.

While the Garden State had a Republican governor, Chris Christie, as recently as 2018, Mr Biden has consistently polled more than 20 percentage points ahead of Mr Trump there.

Democratic Senator Cory Booker is expected to cruise to re-election.

Tuesday is Election Day, although nearly 100m Americans have already voted early, roughly two-thirds of the total number of people who voted in the entire 2016 election.

The Garden State Parkway runs the length of its namesake state, from the state's southern tip near Cape May up to the town of Montvale on the New York state line.

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