BIRCH RUN, Mich. -- Republican presidential candidate and real estate mogul Donald Trump rallied his supporters in Michigan Tuesday night during a Genesee and Saginaw county Republican party fundraiser event.
Fresh of his headline-making debate appearancelast week, Tuesday night marked Trump's first visit to Michigan since announcing his run for the White House.
While protesters posted up outside, roughly 2,500 people crammed into the sold out Birch Run Expo Center, near Flint, to hear him give a keynote address for the event.
“I am so excited,” Christine Wofford told FOX 17 Tuesday afternoon while waiting to get into the event. “I love Donald Trump, I love his charisma, his excitement and his love for the United States of America.”
Protesters outside, organized by the Michigan Democratic Party, said Trump is simply unfit to be presidential material.
“I want to show people that while Trump might be leading in the polls and turning out 2,000 people, not everyone in this state supports the hateful things he has to say,” said protester Sam McNearny.
Trump came out swinging early Tuesday night, with Mexico and bring jobs back from countries, heard throughout the speech. He also, once again, said the issue of illegal immigration wouldn't even be a discussion point amongst candidate if it weren't for him.
“We have to build a wall," Trump said to raucous applause. "And by the way, I’m all for legal immigration, that’s what it’s all about.”
The GOP presidential hopeful also singled out Michigan automaker Ford and its plan to build a $2.5B plant there, something he said he would fight to reverse under his administration.
"Why don't we let the illegals just drive the cars and trucks right over the border," Trump said, tongue in cheek.
Taking jabs at his competitors, the president and the 'scavenger' media, Trump especially went after Jeb Bush, saying he lacked energy and couldn't be trusted to negotiate anything.
“There’s no energy there, no energy," Trump said to the crowd. "We need energy, we need tone,”
Before taking the stage, Trump told reporter he would announce specific policy plans within the next two weeks, adding that people need to trust him. When pressed for specifics, Trump argued the need for flexibility, similar to how he runs his businesses.
Trump refused again to rule out a third-party run if he doesn't get the nomination.
“I want to run as a Republican. that’s what I’m doing,” he said. “I’m going to keep the door open if I’m not treated fairly.”
Following the speech, supporters filed out saying they were pleased with what they heard.
"My son and I got our tickets with just seconds to go before the clock ran out, it was worth it" Robert Murphy said. "I do believe he's unbeatable today."
Others, like John Myers, said Tuesday night's speech had convinced them Trump was the candidate to choose.
"Being brought up a Democrat, I'm very, very intrigued my Mr. Trump and I do believe he will be getting my support,” Meyers told FOX 17.