Heads turned when Gregory Leznevich walked into the Westin Fort Lauderdale on election night and headed for the Broward GOP’s watch party. A few people did a double take: Could that be Donald Trump himself? In Broward County? Tonight?
Leznevich, a resident of Deerfield Beach, looks a lot like Donald Trump. He has the same coppery blond combover and ruddy complexion. Plus, on Tuesday night, he was dressed a lot like a Republican nominee: khakis, red tie, navy blazer, white oxford shirt with monogrammed cuffs.
“People have been saying that for the past 20 years,” he said, sounding slightly tired. “But over the past year, it’s been happening more and more. I can’t go out to get gas without someone saying something or asking to take a picture.”
Leznevich isn’t a politician (though then again, neither was Donald Trump until he ran for president). He had a career in the insurance industry in New York, then moved to Florida, where he founded the Trump-sounding and Boca Raton-based Elite Advisors Group in 2012. His nickname on the golf course, unsurprisingly, is “Trump.”
“Sometimes, I’ll tell people I’m his brother,” he admits. “I tell them that he doesn’t talk about me because I’m the brother that drinks.”
Thankfully — because can you imagine how awkward it would be otherwise? — Leznevich is a fan of Trump’s and voted for him in the 2016 election, so he’s not embarrassed or offended by the comparisons.
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“I admire him, and I admire his kids,” he says. “Children reflect on the parents — if they do okay, that tells you something. He’s got good kids.”
Plus, he argues, Trump’s record of repeatedly declaring bankruptcy actually means that he’s better qualified than most to take on the country’s massive debt. “He came back from bankruptcy four times,” Leznevich points out. “Imagine what he could do for the U.S. government.”
With four years of a Trump presidency ahead of us, Leznevich probably won’t be able to get gas in peace anytime soon. But he may have unintentionally stumbled across a very lucrative side business.
“I heard there was some guy from Saturday Night Live who’s getting paid... just to impersonate him,” he said Tuesday as the first polls began to close. “I could give that a try.”