Trump calls Clinton 'bad person' in San Jose; protesters clash with supporters
SAN JOSE, Calif. (KTVU)— The presumptive Republican presidential candidate— Donald Trump was in San Jose Thursday where he addressed his supporters.
Trump’s jet landed at Mineta San Jose International Airport before his motorcade moved to the San Jose Convention Center where he was greeted by a crowd of about 12,000 people.
The visit comes on the heels of an endorsement from House Speaker Paul Ryan who says he’s convinced Trump will advance the Republican agenda.
It was Trump's first campaign rally in San Jose. He remarked he was impressed with the turnout given the NBA Finals in the Bay Area.
The rally drew some hecklers and it was no surprise that he took strong aim at his likely opponent for the White House come November. Earlier, Hillary Clinton attacked Trump's foreign policy at a speech in San Diego.
"I watched Hillary. It was pathetic...it was pathetic," said Trump. "When you watched her today, [it] does not look presidential. That I can tell you."
Touting his vision to 'Make America Great Again', Trump addressed the large crowd that had packed the structured tent at the convention center to hear him speak.
In his speech, Trump highlighted bringing jobs back, the questions over his fundraising for veterans, and his constant pledge to build a wall along the U.S. border.
"We are going to build that wall. Don't even think about it. And who's going to pay for that wall?," he asked rhetorically, to which the crowd shouted, "Mexico!"
Early on in the speech, he touted the early endorsement of the National Rifle Association and called out former President Bill Clinton on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) for being what he called the “worst economic deal made by our country”. He also referred to his political rival, Hillary Clinton, as "crooked Hillary"
“We don’t say Lyin’ Ted [Cruz] anymore. We love Ted.” Trump then not only referred to the former Secretary of State as "crooked", but added the insulting, "Lyin’" to his arsenal, reassigning the name to Clinton. "She’s a bad person," he said.
The billionaire, reality television-star-turned politician then made reference to the former First Lady's email scandal and said "emails can't be deleted". He added that she should be jailed. The crowd once again reacted with applause and cheers.
Speaking about the Dodd Frank, Wall Street reforms and the banking industry in general, Trump said “We’re gonna get rid of regulations.”
He also mentioned he’d take care of veterans’ health care.
While the majority of the crowd was no doubt Trump supporters, some hecklers also made their way inside and were quickly escorted out by police.
"We need our protestors. Leave him alone, that's okay," said Trump.
The doors at the center opened at 4 p.m., but some supporters lined up as early as 8:30 a.m.
Many of the small business owners, veterans and some who came as far from Vacaville were unable to get into Trump’s Wednesday night Sacramento rally and decided to attend Thursday's according to KTVU’s Azenith Smith who covered the rally.
"Everyone wants to get a free ride and I think he's going to stop it. He's going to run the country like a business, which needs to be done to put things back in order," said Jeannie Whitehouse of Vacaville.
Trump has already secured the 1,237 delegates necessary to earn him a Republican nomination. However, he said he still plans to run hard in California and is confident he can win over the Golden State come this November.
There were safety concerns at the rally and hundreds of protesters who made their presence known outside after the event, but San Jose police had a significant presence. One officer said all hands were on deck.
Outside the convention center, violence erupted, as shoving, pushing, shouting obscenities and taunting led to clashes between anti-Trump protestors and Trump supporters.
The protests were mostly peaceful and reached around 500 people at its peak, but police had to block streets, enforce crowd control and had to call in other agencies.
At one point, a group swarmed into the driveway of the Marriott Hotel adjacent to the convention center where a crowd surrounded and trapped a woman who was wearing a Trump shirt. She responded by making gestures back at them. Then someone from the crowd threw raw eggs, hitting her in the head. Hotel staff at first blocked the door to the hotel, refusing to let anyone in, but later allowed the woman to enter the lobby.
Police in riot gear moved in and pushed the crowd back onto the street, at times breaking into confrontations with some protestors.
A short time later, another incident around the corner led to one Trump supporter being knocked to the ground in a confrontation with a protestor. Some people on both sides tried to intervene and keep the tensions from escalating. The Trump supporter said the clash was over his Trump hat.
"He just walked past me and grabbed my hat. I just chased after him to get the hat back and right afterwards, I grabbed my and he threw a right hook right here by my ear," said Nathan Velasquez of San Jose. "I just said get back here. That's all I ever said to him."
"I find it rather ironic that someone who's Mexican getting jumped for supporting Trump," Velasquez said apparently referring to himself.
Some of the protestors continued following and surrounding Trump supporters as they left, leading to more pushing and shoving.
The majority of the protestors and Trump supporters, however, were not violent.
Many told KTVU before clashes broke out that they were trying to express their outrage and anger in a peaceful way.
"There's a lot of emotion. I feel like here's a reflection of people not willing to accept that a person running for president has those kinds of ideals and represents that kind of hate. I think this represents people standing up and not willing to take it," said Alejandra Ponce De Leon, who was visiting from Anaheim and happened to hear about the rally.
"He's racist, he's misogynist and he cannot be our president," said Chelsie Brooks of Oakland.
"I just think that what Trump is doing is not right," said Jose Montes of San Jose. "I'm 19 and I have two Mexican parents who work hard to put food on the table. He sees us as criminals and we are not criminals we are strong hardworking individuals, you know."
Just before 10 p.m. police said about 100 anti-Trump protesters were still moving through downtown streets.
San Jose Police said in the end there were few arrests, no significant property damage, and that one officer was assaulted after the Trump rally.
Trump's next campaign stop is Redding, Calif. on Friday.