GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump on Sunday halted a campaign rally in Illinois, handing his podium over to a man sporting a “legal immigrant for Trump” shirt.
“People are going to come in to our country — we want them to come in, but they’ve got to come in like you: legally,” Trump said during the event in Bloomington, Ill., upon noticing the listener.
“My man — I’d love to get you up on the stage,” Trump told the audience member. “I’d love to get you up on this stage [and] I’d love to show them that shirt.
“Come on, bring him up,” Trump told his security detail. “He knows if he makes a move he’s going to get clobbered by these guys.”
Trump then welcomed the man on stage, eventually turning over the microphone and letting the supporter address his crowd.
“I came to this country when I was 5 years old, and my dad went through hell to get us citizenship,” the man said. “We did it by the book.
“I’m here because the media does not separate legal immigration from illegal [immigration]. People spill out their guts to come here legally and it’s just really a shame that they give it a bad name.”
The man then turned toward Trump, asking the billionaire if he takes issue with America’s legal immigration system.
“You do support immigration?” he asked the outspoken billionaire.
“I do, I do,” Trump responded. “What I support is facts.”
Trump then mocked the media for how they’d cover the unlikely encounter as the man returned into the crowd.
“Did I ever meet you before?” he asked. “They’re going to say, ‘Oh, he met him before, they had a meeting last night.’ No, no. I know great people and I appreciate it.”
Trump’s stop in Illinois comes two days before its Republican presidential primary on Tuesday.
The real estate tycoon has frequently taken a hard-line stance on illegal immigration, linking it with drug trafficking and violent crime. He has also drawn ire from Mexico for repeatedly suggesting it will fund a border wall separating it from the U.S.