17-year old from Eastern Shore is likely youngest Republican delegate

Posted at 8:09 AM, Jul 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-21 23:21:22-04

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Nearly 2,500 delegates packed into the Quicken Loans arena in Cleveland this week for the Republican Convention, and the youngest is from Virginia's Eastern Shore.

"It took a little while to hit me that we're going to Cleveland this summer," said Jack Salm, who's 17 years old. He'll turn 18 just three days before election day. The senior at Broadwater Academy is also a captain of the school's football team.

Jack Salm, 17

Jack Salm, 17

Salm took an interest in politics when he was 9 or 10, following in his dad's footsteps. He's been involved in Republican politics for years.

"As I matured and grew older, it was something I grew interested in and something I want to do with my life," said Salm.

When Salm was growing up, Trump was a popular reality TV show star and businessman. It wasn't until Trump ran for president this time that Salm learned more about him. He met him when he came to Nauticus last October.

"He isn't a career politician," said Salm. "I can't say I agree with every single one of his positions, but he's 100% better than having someone like Hillary Clinton as President. I can guarantee you on that."

Salm was chosen as a delegate in April. Delegates have to pay for their expenses to the convention on their own, and he raised money to support his trip.

Gary C. Byler, Hampton Roads Chairman of the Trump campaign, says Salm is getting a lot of attention as the youngest delegate. "I think it's important that we have young folks mainly because, let's face it, it's what the future is about," said Byler.