Wildwood, New Jersey’s Democratic mayor says he was unwelcome at President Donald Trump’s recent campaign rally in his town after he asked the Trump campaign to pay for the cost of the visit.
“I’m disappointed, frankly,” Mayor Pete Byron told Asbury Park Press. “I think it’s an economic shot in the arm, as well as for the national exposure.”
He said he would have welcomed Trump because a visit from the president is more than a political event, and he would have at least liked to meet the president and shake his hand. But according to Byron, Rep. Jeff Van Drew, R-N.J., informed him before the event that the Trump campaign was bothered by some remarks the mayor had made in the press about the campaign covering the cost of the trip, comments that Byron says were not a political statement.
The mayor notes that all other events organizers have to cover the cost to the taxpayers by paying municipal fees.
“As the mayor of Wildwood, I represent everyone,” Byron told NJ.com. “I need to look into these costs and look for reimbursement if it is anything out of the normal cost of business. I have to do that.”
“I am disappointed in this, but this is not about me,” he added. “This is about the city. This is fantastic for the city as well as the whole county. Whether I get into the event or not, it is not as important as the economic impact it will have on the city of Wildwood. I am thankful that the city has this opportunity.”