Donald Trump stops at Cafe du Monde, raises big dollars in Old Metairie for 2024 campaign

Donald Trump stops at Cafe du Monde, raises big dollars in Old Metairie for 2024 campaign
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Worried about two indictments, and the prospect of more to come?

Former President Donald Trump offered a defiant “no” Tuesday evening, paying a visit to Café du Monde in the French Quarter before heading to Old Metairie for a fundraiser at a supporter’s home.

With reporters, cameramen and photographers perfectly positioned to capture his moves, Trump strolled from his vehicle into the quintessential New Orleans beignet factory, waved to the cheering throng and stopped to make brief remarks to the media.

“We have a lot of crooked people running our nation,” he said. “Our country is failing. We have to turn it around. That’s very important.”

Trump then turned around, walked three steps and ordered “the best you have” to server Kitty Giroir at the take-out window.

Giroir handed him a café au lait and a white bag with three beignets. He gave her a $100 tip for the staff and departed, less than five minutes after arriving.

“I’ve had a lot of celebrities come through,” Giroir, a seven-year employee, said afterward when asked whether she was excited.

The visit to New Orleans came at a time when Trump is facing two indictments, one secured by the Justice Department, the other by the Manhattan district attorney, developments that would have felled previous presidential aspirants. But Trump has proven to be impervious to the traditional laws of political gravity among his faithful.

“He has a bond with his supporters that is unbreakable. They think every indictment is abusive and unfair, and it draws them to Trump even more,” said Jeff Crouere, a conservative pundit who hosts a daily talk radio show in New Orleans. “They’re not buying what the government is saying.”

Still, polls show that he has lost ground among Democrats and political Independents since being charged.

John Couvillon, a Baton Rouge-based pollster, recently conducted a national survey of Republican primary voters that mimics the results found by others: 83% of Republicans believe he did a great job as president, while 61% have a favorable opinion of him.

In all, 53% favor Trump over an extensive Republican field, showing he remains the clear favorite, but with some erosion of support from those who like him.

Couvillon said he believes the national polling data would yield similar results in Louisiana.

The fundraiser unfolded at the home of Joe Canizaro, a retired banker and developer who has been a friend of Trump’s for decades.

Canizaro said the interest in Tuesday’s event has been better than expected: With a goal of raising $1.75 million, Canizaro said he expects the campaign to collect over $2 million.

The event has a price tag of $23,200 per contributor, but those who donate $100,000 or more can participate in a roundtable with the former president.

Asked whether Trump’s legal troubles have caused him concern, Canizaro said, “Nothing I see in the news frightens me. He’s capable of handling himself and his point of view. So far I haven’t seen a reason to believe he’s a criminal.”

Canizaro is co-hosting the event with Boysie Bollinger, a retired shipbuilder. The two served as co-chairs of Trump’s finance chairmen in Louisiana when he carried the state in the 2016 and 2020 presidential elections.

Canizaro and his wife, Sue Ellen, have contributed at least $833,000 to Trump and the Republican Party since 2017, according to figures compiled by, part of the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonpartisan Washington nonprofit. Bollinger and his wife, Joy, have contributed $765,000 to Trump and the Republican Party since 2017.

Another major contributor to Trump has been Eddie Rispone, the Republican businessman in Baton Rouge who narrowly lost the 2019 gubernatorial campaign to Gov. John Bel Edwards. Trump campaigned twice for Rispone during that runoff. Rispone donated for Tuesday’s event but cannot make it because of a scheduling conflict.

Rispone is among the many Republicans who question the Department of Justice’s indictment of Trump. Federal prosecutors accuse him of hoarding classified documents after he left the White House, including highly sensitive information on nuclear codes and military secrets, and of thwarting government efforts to get them back. Trump pleaded not guilty in federal court in Miami.

“We always suspected the DOJ and the FBI as being corrupt,” Rispone said. “Now we really have the evidence.”

Still, Rispone wishes Trump would carry himself more like former President Ronald Reagan, who got along with his political enemies.

“If he could have a little more Reagan, a little more diplomacy, that would be great,” Rispone said. “But he has a strong backbone.”

Fred Heebe, a New Orleans businessman, has been a major donor to Trump and attended a fundraiser that Canizaro hosted for Trump in 2019, when he was president.

Heebe decided to sit this one out.

“I’ve decided to be uninvolved for now,” he said.

The Manhattan district attorney has also indicted Trump on charges that he illegally concealed $130,000 in hush payments to Stormy Daniels, an adult film star originally from Baton Rouge who says she had an affair with him.

Trump appears to be facing at least one and possibly two more indictments: one by the Justice Department for his attempts to remain in power after his loss to President Joe Biden, highlighted by the attack on the Capitol by his supporters on Jan. 6, 2021, and one by the district attorney in Atlanta for trying to overturn his election defeat in Georgia.

“The charges don’t make any sense and probably won’t withstand scrutiny from the judges,” said Louis Gurvich, a New Orleans security company owner who chairs the Louisiana Republican Party. “This man is being indicted all the time, whereas other Democratic politicians are causing extensive and consequential crimes and aren’t being indicted. The public is losing confidence in some parts of the prosecutorial system.”

The former president arrived at 5 p.m. to Louis Armstrong International Airport, where he spent about 10 minutes shaking hands and signing autographs. About 125 supporters were gathered to greet Trump at the airport’s old terminal.

First to greet Trump was Attorney General Jeff Landry, the frontrunner in Louisiana’s gubernatorial race, who has the former president’s endorsement.


About Mary Weyand 11096 Articles
Mary founded Scoop Tour with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research. With ample knowledge about the Automobile industry, she also contributes her knowledge for the Automobile section of the website.

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