Donald Trump’s campaign rolled into Burlington, Vermont on Thursday evening. But the action began far earlier in the day, as demonstrators in the liberal enclave, where Bernie Sanders bases his campaign, worked to undermine the rally.
The first person in line for the rally arrived outside the Flynn Center at 4:30 a.m. — even though he was a Sanders supporters. This would become a theme.
A local sandwich shop, immediately next to the Flynn Center, offered up a special sandwich Thursday, “The Donald,’’ priced at $20.16. They sold zero.
The Trump campaign said they gave out 20,000 tickets for the event, for a venue that seats only 1,400, and expected 6,500 people to show up, according to police. Hours before the rally began, the line outside the Flynn Center stretched for blocks.
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Not all were Trump supporters, however.
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Due to overticketing and fear of the rally being disrupted by protesters, the Trump campaign began screening those in line, only letting people enter the theater if they pledged support for the Republican candidate.
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While Trump supporters were let into the Flynn Center, a large protest formed outside.
Inside the rally, Trump took the stage to a packed theater.
However, the screening process was not completely effective. Trump’s speech was repeatedly disrupted by protesters.
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(It was 25 degrees in Burlington Thursday night, not “10 degrees below zero.’’)
As President Barack Obama was simultaneously holding a town hall on gun control, Trump pledged to eliminate gun-free zones on his first day in office.
“You know what a gun-free zone is to a sicko? That’s bait,’’ he said.
Amid the rally and protests, there were still supporters outside hoping to get into the theater when the speech already half-way finished.
When it was all said and done, the leading Republican candidate wrapped up his more-than-an-hour-long speech a little after 8:30 p.m.
“We are going to make America great again,’’ he said. Watch the full event below: