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Small-Business Owner Steps to the Podium During Trump White House Speech and Steals the Show

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On Monday, Bruce Hrobak went from a small business owner to a viral sensation.

Hrobak is a fisherman and owner of Billy Bones Bait and Tackle in Port St. Lucie, Florida. In case you missed it, he was also one of the speakers at President Donald Trump’s White House summit on the environment and deregulation.

He talked about how the president’s environmental policies had helped his business, but what really got people’s attention was how effusive he was in his praise of Trump.

Hrobak began by noting how he had “made a big trip up here to make sure we’re here. This is very important.”

Hrobak has owned his bait and tackle store for 18 years now, 13 of those in Florida. The business had been affected by toxic algae coming from Lake Okeechobee.

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Hrobak told Trump that “you’re not just doing a tremendous job all the way around, but you jumping into this environment brings my heart to warmth.” He noted that in 2018, his business “closed several days a week because of the algae and people being frightened.” His marine mechanic got an infection from the infestation.

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“But basically, your completion of this Herbert Hoover Dike is going to make a tremendous difference,” he told the president. The administration has been trying to speed up repairs on the dike on Lake Okeechobee, which ensures “contaminants and fertilizers” don’t escape the lake.

Hrobak joked that even his wife wasn’t “yelling at him as much” before finishing by thanking the president.

“Thank you for everything you’re doing, sir. I speak for so many people. You bring my heart to warmth for everything you’re doing all the way around,” he said.



“My nephew, Kenny Hrobak, is like my son. He is in South Korea right now in the Army, and he’s doing things, and he is so proud of you and those boys, they all just — I’ve never seen people that are so proud of our president. I’m amazed,” he continued.

“”We stayed up to watch you that day you got elected. We were like, ‘He’s got it, he’s got it.’ I’m sorry, I’m telling the truth! Listen, my dad taught me don’t tell no lies and when you want me to shut up, I will,” he said to laughter.

“But I’m telling the truth. Dad would always say he looked like Donald Trump a little bit, but you are much handsomer. Thank you, thank you so much.”

“God bless America and God bless our president! Give him a hand!” Hrobak concluded before yelling, “Trump 2020!” into the mic.

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In an appearance on “Fox & Friends” on Tuesday, Hrobak continued to laud the president.

“The president loves everybody and I just don’t get why people give him a hard time. He’s a great guy, and I was proud and honored to meet him,” he said.

Hrobak was the kind of guy who helped propel Trump to victory in 2016 — the sort of hardworking, unpretentious guy candidates love to pretend they’re courting but never do. I don’t pretend to know what the blue-collar demographic is going to do in 2020, but I can guess at least one among their ranks is excited for Trump to run again. Either way, you can’t deny that this small-business owner stole the show.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Birthplace
Morristown, New Jersey
Education
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture




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