Juan Caro and Courtney Grubb, two CSU students, attended the presidential inauguration for Donald Trump on Jan. 20, 2017 in Washington, D.C.
Juan Caro, a member of the College Republicans at CSU and the Conservative Interest Group of Colorado, received the invitation to attend the inauguration for his work with Republican campaigns this past election season.
“Every single person I’m here with worked on a campaign,” said Caro, who previously worked on the Darryl Glenn campaign. “We all came here to see this together, kind of as a reward for all our hard work … (and) to see our candidates that won, to visit them, to say ‘hi’ to them, and then come to the inauguration. I’d say about 70 percent of the group that we work with is here right now.”
“It was a huge honor to be here,” Caro said. “It was great to have the Trump campaign and the Inauguration Committee provide us with such great tickets so that we could attend. It was a great ‘thank you’ from their campaign.”
Caro said Trump’s victory signified a shift in American politics.
“I think this is a fantastic Republican victory,” Caro said. “For me, it shows that you can be anti-establishment and still win. It shows that, although he is a very controversial man, I believe he is a modest man, and hopefully he is going to get done what he promised in his speech. Hopefully, he gives the country back to the people.”
Caro mentioned the presence of protesters as he left the inauguration.
“Protesters have blocked off every major highway,” Caro said. “We can’t get out of D.C.”
Caro also stated that a conservative was hit in the back of the head with a flag pole by a protester. Caro added that protestors shoved, punched, harrassed, and spit on people wearing “Make America Great Again” hats in a statement to the Collegian.
Protesters were reported to have started demonstrating before the inauguration started. Nearly 100 protesters were arrested after damaging windows and cars, and throwing rocks at police near the inauguration ceremony, according to CNN.
Courtney Grubb, a junior political science major, also attended the inauguration with her family and friends.
Grubb said the opportunity to attend the inauguration was not one she wanted to miss.
“For me, it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity,” Grubb said. “I don’t know if I’ll be able to do this again, so I just wanted to be able to witness history.”
Grubb said she felt that she witnessed history in the making while attending.
“It was thrilling (to be there),” Grubb said. “I knew this was history. Everything has been changing over the past couple months since he was elected, and it was just inspiring to be able to be his presence and listening to him give his speech after he was sworn in.”
Grubb said, during Trump’s speech, that she believed his administration would return the government to the people.
“I felt like he was going to go through with a lot of his promises that he’s made to us, and especially noting that the middle class was not going to be forgotten again,” Grubb said. “This administration is going back to the people. It’s not to the rich. It’s a government of the people, by the people and for the people.”
Collegian reporter Haley Candelario can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @H_Candelario98.