As New Yorkers went to church to celebrate Easter Sunday, and others wore their homemade bonnets to parade down Fifth Avenue, a small group of hardcore supporters of the president had another idea: to hold a rally in support of President Trump in tourist-concentrated Columbus Circle.
“Happy Easter to everyone! God bless you and God bless America,” chanted Jovi Val, the leader of the New York-based pro-Trump group, Modern Patriots. Starting at noon, half a dozen members from this group gathered in front of the Trump International Hotel & Tower, giving speech after speech and handing out flyers to those coming out of the 59th Street No. 1 subway station. Most people who walked by paid little attention to the group.
“It’s 1776 once again. And November 9 was our independence day,” said Val, wearing a Trump-classic, “Make America Great Again” red cap. “We’re coming out today to support not only our president but our country. We’re going to get our country back.”
The group, which has about 170 followers on Facebook, posted days ahead that they would be “preaching” the success of the Trump presidency on Easter Sunday afternoon. “The resurrection of Jesus and this country and just four days shy of his 90 days in office, let’s show our president Donald J. Trump how we the city of NY love him and respect his presidency,” the group wrote in a post.
Since February, Val and the Modern Patriots, some of who are Jewish, have been holding pro-Trump rallies every weekend. “We didn’t realize today was Easter Day when we were planning it,” said Val, who identifies as a non-denominational Protestant. He said he had no plan to go to church.
“Some of us said this is un-Christian thing to do on Easter Day,” he added. “But we will gather for a small prayer service here later.”