The first Democratic debate has drawn criticism for having paid little attention to Latinos and immigration, but true to form, GOP presidential frontrunner Donald Trump made it a focus of his speech at a campaign rally on Wednesday.
Speaking in Virginia, Trump slammed the albeit few references to immigration, seizing on them as examples that the Democratic candidates, in his view, want to give away a plethora of things to undocumented immigrants.
Advocates who favor more lenient immigration policies heckled the billionaire and got into scuffles with his supporters, who reportedly grabbed the hecklers’ signs. One Trump supporter also spit on an opponent of the candidate, according to USA Today. The advocates were escorted out by police.
“I watched last night as Hillary [Clinton] and Bernie Sanders, they just couldn’t give away things fast enough,” Trump said in an apparent reference to the Democrats’ expression of support for affordable college and paid family leave, according to USA Today. “And they’re giving them to illegal immigrants. They want heath care for illegal immigrants. They want drivers' licenses for illegal immigrants. They want, listen to this, Social Security for illegal immigrants.”
Trump called Sanders a communist “maniac.”
He added that the debate did not sufficiently press Clinton on such things as the controversy over her handling of government emails while she was Secretary of State, or other issues.
He also took aim at her wavering position on the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact.
“I have to hand it to Hillary Clinton. You’re all going to be mad at me, but I have to hand it to her,” he said, according to USA Today. “It took great courage for her to go against President Obama on the trade pact. You know why? Because she could be indicted.”
“Petraeus did 5 percent of what she did, and they destroyed his life,” Trump said.
When the hecklers tried to disrupt his speech, Trump said: “That’s all right. That’s why we have freedom of speech.”
He said he would build a wall along the border with Mexico that is “going to be something special,” and, he added, that Mexico would pay to have it done.
He said that immigrants the U.S. does allow in will get to enter through “a big beautiful door right in the middle.”
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