INDIANAPOLIS – What a huge week for the State GOP and especially for original Trump supporters in Indiana. Having a Trump in the state six months to the night of being first on the board to elect Donald J. Trump president, and one year to the week of winning the critical Indiana primary, was a big-league way to cap off a great year.
The 20-point general election victory followed but also overshadows Indiana’s primary win when candidate Trump won all nine congressional districts, thus collecting all 57 Indiana delegates and knocking out his last two opponents. Remember the surprise withdrawal by Sen. Ted Cruz that night followed by Gov. Kasich the next day? Back then, Donald Trump Jr. was in the state in April, stumping for his Dad. Having him back was a cool reminder of how important Indiana was for the Trump nomination.
That May 3 primary win, at a time when pundits could only focus on what would keep Donald Trump from the nomination, propelled him on a clear path to well over the 1,237 delegates needed without having to worry about any further competition. Don Jr. acknowledged it in his speech before over 1,000 loyalists, saying that it all started in Indiana.
Kudos to Kyle Hupfer, doing a terrific job in his new role as state chairman, for asking Don Jr. to headline the first state GOP dinner under new leadership.  I am especially pleased that Republicans in Indiana have unified around our president.
Hopefully it stays that way after the latest round of unsubstantiated stories coming out of the Washington Post and New York Times and pure hypocrisy coming from national democrats following James Comey’s firing.  Not to digress, but it is funny how Comey’s firing completely confused Hillary’s comeback after she had again blamed him for her loss.  I don’t think we’ve heard from her since – what can she say now?  And why are stories with unnamed sources, that are easily debunked, so quick to become the latest bombshells from the unglued media?  A mob mentality has now taken over the national media and national democrats.  Remember that none of the people that we are hearing from have even seen the Comey memo.  But back to that dinner in and about Indiana, where heads are more level.
For true Trumpers, it was great not just to have Don Jr. in town but also to have the Indiana Trump state chair Rex Early introduce the nation’s first son. After more than a year of campaigning and traveling the state with him, I knew that Rex was honored, excited and nervous to be on that stage and again in the spotlight. Of course he came through like a true Marine and added some humor when sharing how Don Jr. took time out from hunting for votes to do some turkey hunting while in Indiana last spring, a passion shared by Rex.
The reminder of all of the hard work and how rewarding the payoff has been was followed by a call to stay vigilant and continue the effort in 2018 to win back the Senate seat held by Joe Donnelly, “My father will need that vote,” said Don Jr.
Another reminder from the primary came when Don Jr. mentioned Bob Knight’s support and that he wants to keep helping. Candidate Trump held seven rallies in the last 13 days before that primary win, not just with Bob Knight but also with Gene Keady, Digger Phelps and Lou Holtz via a video endorsement shown at the South Bend rally, proving Trump was a unifier, not a divider. He united Indiana sports fans.
April, 2016, was significant for another reason. On April 20, the day after Trump had devastated his opponents in the New York primary, he made his first campaign visit to Indiana, holding the first of the two state fairground rallies. He made a stop at the Governor’s Residence for his first meeting with then Gov. Mike Pence which went extremely well and was the actual beginning of a great partnership that was cemented again in Indiana on July 12 and 13. On those dates, Gov. Pence had the good fortune of a flat tire to the Trump plane after a rally in Westfield, following a fundraising event at the Columbia Club.
That flat tire led to an unscheduled dinner meeting at a downtown restaurant attended by Donald and Eric Trump and Gov. Pence and First Lady Karen Pence, and then a hastily scheduled morning breakfast meeting with Don Jr. and Ivanka flying in to participate.
The rest is history, but much of this story is forgotten because of the dizzying pace of events that followed, including the Republican Convention in Cleveland, the race to the finish on Nov. 8, the transition and now four months into the first term.  
It was great to have Donald Trump Jr. back in Indiana with a positive message and as a reminder of the events that occurred before and after that May 3 primary. Incredible things have happened for Indiana and from Indiana for this Trump presidency, and they will continue.

Samuel is president of Samuel Solutions in Indianapolis and was vice chair of the Indiana Trump campaign in 2016.