El Dorado residents John and Tasha Sinclair had the opportunity to have dinner with President Donald Trump recently at the Trump International Hotel in Washington D.C.
The Sinclairs were invited to the dinner by U.S. Rep. Bruce Westerman, R-Hot Springs, who they’ve been long time supporters of, John Sinclair said. He said Westerman invited several other Republican donors as well; about 150 of the president’s constituents were in attendance.
Additionally, several other major Republican politicians were there, including House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, Secretary of Energy Rick Perry, U.S. Rep Steve Scalise, R-Louisiana, and House Majority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-California.
“He was personality plus,” John Sinclair said of Trump. “And unlike everyone else, I don’t necessarily agree with everything he does or says and the way he says them. But he is a very dynamic guy.”
Tasha Sinclair said Trump acted as though he’d been waiting all night to see her and her husband when they met him.
“He’s very personable. I think even if you’re not a Trump supporter that you would find his personality very likable,” Tasha Sinclair said. “He’s very likable and genuine.”
The Sinclairs said Trump also gave a speech which lasted between an hour and an hour and a half. John Sinclair said Donald Trump, Jr. was in attendance to introduce his father.
The dinner took place in late September, during the height of the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. In his speech, the Sinclairs said, Trump addressed the hearings, as well as the then-upcoming midterm elections and his accomplishments in office.
“He didn’t have a speech written out. He spoke off the cuff,” Tasha Sinclair said. “He cracked a few jokes. He’s very funny. What comes across to a lot of people as arrogance, really, a lot of times I think he’s just picking [on them] and has that kind of sense of humor.”
The Sinclairs also got to take a nighttime tour of the U.S. Capitol.
“There was no one there except us and the Congressman (Westerman),” John Sinclair said. “It was neat.”
Both Sinclairs voted for Trump in the 2016 election, though they classify themselves as conservatives rather than Republicans. Tasha Sinclair said after meeting Trump, she liked him “a whole lot more” than she even did when she cast her vote for him.
John Sinclair owns a company, Lycus Ltd., which his wife said has had increased sales since Trump was elected. She said they recently expanded their sales into China, adding that Trump’s tariffs had helped to level the playing field for the business.
The two said the experience was a very positive one.
“He told me I was a great guy,” John Sinclair said. “He didn’t know me, but that’s what he said.”
Tasha Sinclair said she was able to correct a couple of common misconceptions about the president as well when she finally saw him in person.
“Two things I noticed: One thing is his hair is not that bad. It doesn’t look like what you see in the pictures and on TV – much, much, much better,” Tasha Sinclair said. “And he doesn’t have the white around his eyes. His skin looks like anybody else’s, it’s fine.”
Caitlan Butler can be reached at 870-862-6611 or firstname.lastname@example.org.