Meet ‘Baby Trump’: The 24-foot tall balloon of the president

The Baby Trump balloon was inflated in front of the Fayette county courthouse ahead of President Donald Trump’s rally at Rupp Arena in Lexington, Kentucky on Monday, Nov. 4, 2019. Photo by Arden Barnes | Staff

Sydney Momeyer

Gathered along the streets of South Broadway and Main Street on Monday night were President Donald Trump supporters, protesters and a 24-foot baby balloon.

Spectators amassed outside of the Fayette County Courthouse to take in the enormous balloon that portrays Trump as a baby holding a phone. The balloon was set up ahead of the Trump Rally – where Trump is expected to be endorsing gubernatorial candidate and incumbent Governor Matt Bevin – that was taking place down the street at Rupp Arena. 

“Gosh, it gives us something to laugh at,” said spectator Laura Parrish, 48. “How else can you portray a leader who has to cry every time something does not go his way? I’ve basically associated him with a little child who, when he doesn’t get his way, holds his breath until he turns blue, stomps up and down and hopes he gets attention from it.”

A GoFundMe was set up to bring the balloon to Lexington that was titled, “Bring the Baby Trump Balloon to Lexington.” The GoFundMe was created by Concerned Citizens for the Center LEX and KFK Kentucky, who wrote on the page that they wanted to bring the balloon to Lexington on this particular day to “show Matt Bevin and Donald Trump that [they] don’t agree with their politics or their approach to governing.” Those who created the GoFundMe have claimed to be a “non-partisan political group based in Downtown Lexington.”

“We are remaining anonymous for the time being to minimize the potential for reprisal by Trump Supporters,” the GoFundMe reads.

Supporters of the balloon raised $5,595 to help get the balloon to Lexington for Monday night. Those who donated to the GoFundMe were able to receive a two-foot tall rendition of the 24-foot tall balloon. 

“I saw the GoFundMe on Facebook and was one of the first people who donated,” said Brittany Peel, 35, who was watching the balloon get set up. “Seeing it in London and in Paris, it is just awesome that is going to be here in Lexington too and then we can really hopefully make a visible statement to all the people coming to see Trump, that not everyone supports him.”

Peel said that, to her, the balloon says that Trump is “not a legitimate leader,” and “that he is a clown.”

“He doesn’t care about anybody but himself, just complete disrespect to our country and to the office of the presidency,” she said. “It’s a joke.”

Rob Kennedy, who has dubbed himself “babysitter of the Baby Trump balloon,” helps takes the balloon around to different places in America and works with local organizations to “hopefully make a political statement about the president’s behavior.”

“If it’s where he’s got one of his rallies going on then better still,” Kennedy said. 

Kennedy originally created a GoFundMe in 2017 to help bring the original Baby Trump balloon, from its first appearance in London, England, to the United States. However, Kennedy said he realized it would be cheaper to just make a new one.

With the money from that GoFundMe, six renditions of the Baby Trump balloon were made. Four travel around to different locations, while one sits near Mar-a-Lago and the other is on the west coast, according to Kennedy.

About a week ago, organizers were in Minneapolis with the balloon to protest one of Trump’s rallies. 

“We go wherever we feel we’ve got security, where we feel we can benefit the local organization that we are coming to help,” Kennedy said. 

Not everyone surrounding the Trump balloon was in support of it, however. Dakota, 23, who wished for his last name to remain anonymous, said that he was in attendance to see others’ opinions as he waited for the line to die down outside Rupp Arena. 

“I think its idiotic, I mean honestly,” Dakota said. “But it’s a free country, you can do whatever you want. I support their right to be able to do that, but I don’t believe in it. I think its childish and idiotic.”

Also in attendance outside of Rupp Arena were the owners of a balloon that portrays a cat, squeezing off the head of a “local worker” in its right hand while holding a bag of money in its left and smoking a cigar. This balloon was set up adjacent to the Trump balloon. 

Jeremy Waugh, one of the owners of the cat balloon, said he took advantage of the Trump balloon to set up his. Waugh said he was at the courthouse “on behalf of working class people across the state of Kentucky and across the nation.”

“That’s a fat cat choking off a local worker, and he’s holding a big bag of money,” Waugh said. “Because that’s the way we get exploited. Management of corporations like to make their profits off the backs of the working class, and that’s what this represents.”

President Trump is set to speak to the masses of Kentuckians who packed Rupp Arena for his rally at 7:30 p.m.

So where adult Trump goes, baby Trump goes with him.

The election between gubernatorial candidates Matt Bevin and Andy Beshear will take place tomorrow, Tuesday, Nov. 5. Polls in Lexington open at 6 a.m. and will remain open until 6 p.m.