Thursday, July 25, 2024

Trump hawks $399 branded shoes at 'Sneaker Con' a day after Trump settles $355 million against him

PHILADELPHIA — As he wraps up the Republican presidential nomination, former President Donald Trump made a highly unusual stop on Saturday, hawking new Trump-branded sneakers at “Sneaker Con.” .”

Trump was met with loud cheers at the Philadelphia Convention Center when he unveiled what he called the first official Trump shoe.

The shoes, featuring shiny gold high-tops with an American flag detail on the back, are sold for $399 as the “Never Surrender Hi-Tops,” a new website that sells Trump-branded shoes and “Victory47” cologne and perfume for $99. A bottle. He would be the 47th president if re-elected.

Although Trump campaign officials promoted the appearance in online posts, the website says it has nothing to do with Trump's campaign.

A day after a judge in New York fined Trump and his company $355 million, the former president lied for years about his assets, defrauded banks, insurers and others, and schemed to grow his wealth. on financial statements.

Trump's appearance drew confrontations from his opponents and chants of “America!” From supporters who arrived at the sneaker event decked out in Trump gear. The fighting chants sometimes made it difficult to hear Trump speak.

Some were given signs that read “Sneakerheads Love Trump.”

“There's a lot of emotion in this room,” Trump said of the reaction, after holding up a pair of gold shoes and then placing one on each side of his podium.

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“This is something I've been talking about for 12, 13 years. And I think it will be a big success,'' he said.

As he spoke, the smell of weed wafted through the room from time to time.

Some of those in attendance said they had no idea Trump would be there and continued to shop as the crowd gathered around the stage. Many of the visitors said they were not from the city, but instead came from nearby states and Washington, DC.

This isn't the first money-making effort Trump has announced since launching his third campaign for the White House in 2022. Trump reported last year that he earned between $100,000 and $1 million from photo editing and digital trading cards featuring him. Cartoon-like images line up, including an astronaut, a cowboy and a superhero. He has also published books containing photographs of his time in office and letters written to him over the years.

Before he ran for office, Trump called everything from steaks to vodka “Trump University.”

The new sneaker website says it's run by CIC Ventures LLC, which Trump announced he owns in his 2023 financial release. The website says the new initiative is “non-political and has nothing to do with any political campaign”.

However, it describes the sneakers as a limited edition, “true collector's item” that is “bold, gold and tough just like President Trump”.

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“Never Surrender sneakers are your rallying cry in shoe form,” reads the description. “Lace-up and leave ready to win.”

A Trump spokeswoman did not respond to questions, including whether Trump was paid to attend the event.

Among those in the crowd were Jonathan Santiago, 21, and Dania Mitchell, 20, Trump supporters who drove from Monroe County, in the northeastern part of the state, for the sneaker event. They said they were excited to see the former president and praised how he interacted with the crowd. They also had kind words for the sneakers.

“Red Bottoms was really good,” Mitchell said.

Asked about Trump's legal troubles, he shrugged. “I think it's going to be an interesting four years if he's convicted, but I have no doubt he'll be president,” he said.

Also in attendance was a group of “cheer moms” from New Jersey who said they were in town for a cheerleading event and decided to stop by for a chance to see Trump.

Karla Burke, 48, said she heard some people yelling and screaming, but most of the people around her were supporters. “There was a different vibe at the front,” she said.

As for Friday's conviction in Trump's civil fraud trial, Burke said it won't change his support. “I think it's unfair,” he said. “They're going after him so he's not the Republican nominee.”

Biden-Harris 2024 communications director Michael Tyler slammed the look: “Donald Trump's hawkish bootleg off-whites show is the closest he'll come to any Air Force veteran in his lifetime.”

Trump flew from Philadelphia to Michigan, where he held a rally in suburban Detroit and spoke out against Friday's ruling, which he vowed to appeal. Both Pennsylvania and Michigan are expected to be key battleground states.

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Colvin reported from New York.

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