President Donald Trump has two words after the crowd at the College Football Playoffs Championship game cheered him on upon his entrance at the game: "Thank you." Trump, 73, took to Twitter to share a video showing the crowd chant "USA!" as he and First Lady Melania Trump arrived on the field in New Orleans for Lauren Daigle's rendition of the National Anthem.
Thank you! https://t.co/4Qe7fb6r3K— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 14, 2020
It was announced ahead of the game that the Trumps would be in attendance to watch LSU and Clemson face off at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, where security had been significantly heightened. According to NOLA.com, the Secret Service helped run security for the event, and were joined by the New Orleans Police Department, Louisiana State Police, the U.S. Coast Guard and the FBI. Authorities told fans they needed to be patient and expect delays while attempting to enter the stadium.
"Obviously, his presence brings an added level of security, but we are working very closely with our local partners to coordinate all of our efforts to make it as seamless as possible," said Leslie Pichon, the head agent of the Secret Service's New Orleans office.
Though Trump had a widely warm reception at the stadium (with just a few smattering of boos), social media reactions from viewers at home were different, with the president facing a mixed response. "Trump needs to take his ass home," one person wrote. "We don't want you in Nola bruh."
During Trump's time on TV, fans were quick to latch onto a few moments that went viral online, including Melania snatching her hand away from her husband's at one point during the National Anthem. "Did anybody else see Melania push Trump's hand away at the beginning of the national anthem of the college football championship game just now?" one viewer tweeted. "Too funny!! He then grabbed it back with a death grip."
"Prez Trump with an early holding penalty," another viewer cracked. "Melania clearly not pleased!"0comments
Also during the anthem, some of the Twitterverse was irritated when the couple did not sing along to the entire "Star Spangled Banner."
During the actual game, cameras showed actor Vince Vaughn shaking Trump's hand and having a conversation with him and Melania in their box suite; social media continued to talk about the moment well into Tuesday morning, after LSU served up a victory against Clemson. LSU's star quarterback Joe Burrow threw for 463 yards, ran for 58 more and accounted for all six of the team's touchdowns to build a 42-25 lead midway through the fourth quarter. Clemson was unable to recover from the deficit, handing LSU its first National Championship win since 2007, as well as a perfect 15-0 record.