Cue the Adolf Hitler reference. Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump had thousands of his supporters at an Orlando, Florida rally pledge their allegiance to him before the 15 March primary.
"Can I have a pledge? A swearing?" Trump said as he raised his right hand into the air. "Raise your right hand," he told the crowd before leading them in a pledge. "I do solemnly swear," he began, according to The Washington Post. "That I—no matter how I feel, no matter what the conditions, if there's hurricanes or whatever."
When the crowd failed to repeat the pledge verbatim, Trump reassured them they were doing all right. "That's good enough," he noted before continuing the pledge. "Will got on or before the 12th for Donald J Trump for president." Early voting in Florida ends 12 March, but the Florida Republican primary is on 15 March.
According to CNN, Trump later threatened bad things would happen if they went back on their pledge. "Now I know. Don't forget you all raised your hands. You swore. Bad things happen if you don't live up to what you just did," he said.
Trump has been leading Republican presidential rival and Florida Senator Marco Rubio in Rubio's home state. A 25 February poll by PPP placed Trump ahead of Rubio by 20 points, 45% to 25%. However, an earlier email by Rubio's campaign claimed that an unnamed new poll "by one of the nation's most-respected pollsters" placed Rubio behind Trump by only a few points.
The leading GOP candidate used his Orlando rally to attack "little Marco Rubio" and claimed he was the only Republican candidate who can beat Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton, the Post reported. The rally held at the University of Central Florida was attended by thousands of supported and interrupted over a dozen times by protesters.
"You know, we have a divided country, folks," Trump told the crowd following one interruption involving at least one black protester. "We have a terrible president, who happens to be African American. There has never been a great division, just about, than what we have right now—the hatred, the animosity. I will bring people together. I'm going to bring people together, you watch. I'm going to bring people together."