Trump Rallies in Dallas After 2 Venues Turn Him Down - NBC 7 San Diego
Decision 2016

Decision 2016

Full coverage of the race for the White House

Trump Rallies in Dallas After 2 Venues Turn Him Down

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee speaks to crowd of about 3,000 after attending fundraiser in North Dallas



    Donald Trump Speaks at Dallas Rally

    Donald Trump, the presumptive GOP nominee for president, held a rally in Dallas Thursday night after hosting an invitation-only fundraiser earlier in the evening. (Published Thursday, June 16, 2016)

    Donald Trump, the presumptive GOP nominee for president, held a rally in Dallas Thursday night after hosting an invitation-only fundraiser earlier in the evening.

    About 3,000 people were in attendance for the rally at Gilley's South Side Ballroom, which was held on the one-year anniversary of his presidential campaign launch.

    Trump spent much of the rally recounting his victories during his party's hard-fought primary, offering a state-by-state recap.

    "This is the one-year anniversary, and hopefully we're going to make it a worthwhile year," he said.

    Trump did not mention by name one of his former rivals, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz – who won the Texas primary handily and has yet to endorse Trump.

    Still, Trump promised a Texas-sized victory in November.

    "We're going to win Texas so big, we're going to win Texas so big," he said.

    A former Cruz supporter, U.S. Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Lewisville, was among those who spoke at the rally.

    "I endorse the man, Donald Trump. I endorse what he stands for and to make America great again!" Burgess said.

    Trump joked about riding a mechanical bull at the rally – but seemed a little confused by the concept.

    "I read about this place," Trump told the crowd. "Where's that horse?"

    He appeared to be referring to the venue's mechanical bull. The original Gilley's and its bull were featured prominently in the 1980 movie "Urban Cowboy."

    Trump predicted his ride would be a smash in the news.

    "Hey, you want to hit the papers tomorrow? Let's get that horse. I'll ride that horse," said Trump. "The problem is, even if I make it, they'll say I fell off the horse and it was terrible."

    Trump was also inspired by a protester's cowboy hat and suggested selling a "Make America Great Again" version.

    Trump told the crowd he expects winning the general election against likely rival Hillary Clinton in November to be more difficult than the primary because of what he perceived to be a dishonest press.

    "You know, it's funny. I didn't love the press during the primaries, but now it's, like, brutal," Trump said.

    As the rally ended supporters from inside the venue began to mix with protesters who were gathered outside on South Lamar Street. Dozens of police officers, both on foot and on horseback, formed a line and guided the crowds away from Gilley's and into Downtown Dallas, where they dispersed.

    A Dallas Advocate photojournalist was treated for a head injury after he was struck by a rock thrown from the crowd.

    Dallas police reported one arrest for disorderly conduct, and there were seven other people removed from the Trump rally while the candidate spoke.

    In all, about 1,500 to 1,800 police officers worked during the Trump visit, either helping block and direct traffic along the motorcade route, or at the rally site.

    Seven people were treated for heat-related illness, Dallas Fire-Rescue reported, with one person transported to a hospital. The temperature Thursday reached the mid-90s, with a heat index above 100 degrees.

    After the rally, Trump's motorcade returned to the Hilton Dallas/Park Cities off Northwest Highway and the Dallas North Turnpike, where the candidate was expected to stay the night before traveling to Houston on Friday for a campaign event in The Woodlands.

    Fundraiser for Trump

    Prior to the rally at the South Side Ballroom, Trump attended a fundraiser at The Highland Hotel, at Mockingbird Lane and U.S. Highway 75.

    Tickets ranged from $500 to $250,000, and organizers remained tight-lipped about the guest list and wouldn't say how many people were in attendance.

    The email invitation urged North Texas Republicans to come together and unite as a party to support Trump as the presumptive nominee so they can take back the White House in November.

    Dallas Police Prepare to Keep the Peace During Trump Rally

    The South Side Ballroom, which is across the street from Dallas police headquarters, holds fewer than 4,000 people. Trump's rally at the American Airlines Center in Dallas last September drew more than 15,000 inside and several thousand protesters outside.

    In anticipation of large crowds converging at the smaller venue, Dallas police closed several blocks of South Lamar Street, from Cadiz Street to Belleview Street, beginning at 2 p.m.

    Due to the recent history of clashes taking place at Trump rallies, the Dallas Police Department used Wednesday afternoon to practice crowd control and techniques in riot gear at Fair Park.