‘You People Are Suffering': Trump Laments Illegal Immigration in Dallas

His poll numbers soaring, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump brought his campaign to the nation's largest red state Monday for a rally in downtown Dallas.

Trump said the United States is "a dumping ground for the rest of the world" as he lashed out again at immigrants in the country illegally and promised Republican leaders he's just getting started.

An estimated crowd of 15,000 people attended the rally at the American Airlines Center, an arena official told NBC 5's media partners at The Dallas Morning News.

Tickets were free to the Trump event, but once they were all handed out, the only tickets available were going for as much as $100 online.

While as many as 15,000 people listened to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump Monday inside the American Airlines Center in Dallas, several hundred protesters gathered in a public space outside a Dallas church, which did not endorse or sponsor the event, before marching to the arena to protest the candidate’s rally.

Meanwhile, more than 1,000 people participated in a march and demonstration organized by the North Texas chapter of the League of United Latin American Citizens.

They marched from the Dallas Roman Catholic cathedral to the American Airlines Center, as some marchers carried signs criticizing Trump and at least one carried a Trump pinata.

There were no disturbances and no reports of arrests at what was promoted as a "Dump Trump" rally.

Despite calls from GOP officials to tone down his rhetoric, the GOP front-runner decried "anchor babies" and gang members among the immigrants living in the U.S. illegally, drawing huge ovations from a rowdy audience.

"You people are suffering," Trump told the Dallas crowd. "I'm in New York, but they're in New York, too. They're all over the place."

"It's disgusting what's happening to our country," Trump continued as he called for more legal immigration.


Trump was the third Republican presidential contender to visit North Texas in as many weeks.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker appeared at a Sept. 2 campaign event in Highland Park, and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz rallied Sept. 3 at the Fort Worth Stockyards.

Texas voters head to the polls for the primary election on Super Tuesday, March 1, 2016.

Trump's popularity within his party has kept growing. He holds a commanding lead in early polls.

"This is a movement that's happening," he declared, confronting critics who think he's not running a serious campaign. "Now it's time to really start, because this is going to happen, I'm telling you, I'm not going anywhere."

"Unless I win, it's been a waste of time for me, folks," he continued.

Monday night's crowd ate it up.

"Sometimes he puts his foot in his mouth, just like everybody," said Barbara Tomasino, a 65-year-old retired elementary school librarian from Plano, who donned a dress, shoes and a purse plastered with pictures of Trump's face. "If he gets elected, he might need to tone it down a little bit."

Still, the crowd cheered wildly when Trump bashed immigrants in the country illegally, the media, Republican operatives such as Karl Rove, and the energy levels of his rivals.

"I have tremendous energy," Trump said. "Tremendous. To a point where it's almost ridiculous if you think about it."

NBC 5's Julie Fine, Johnny Archer and Amanda Guerra, and The Associated Press' Steve Peoples contributed to this report.

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