MANASSAS, Va. - GOP presidential frontrunner Donald Trump was in Manassas Wednesday night as he spoke at a rally held at the Prince William County Fairground.
Trump held a moment of silence to mourn the San Bernardino shooting victims and called the incident sad and also referenced it at the rally.
His appearance attracted a large crowd here, including a few dozen protesters outside the venue.
A Quinnipiac University poll of Republican voters nationwide released on Wednesday says Trump is leading the pack with 27 percent of the support. That is up from 24 percent last month.
On this night, he focused on supporting police officers and stopping ISIS.
“When you see these shootouts, I can tell you one thing -- I don't want to do it. You don't want to do it. So we want to thank the police and law enforcement. They're unbelievable people,” Trump said.
Regarding ISIS, Trump said, “We haven't seen anything like this since medieval times. In medieval times, they chopped off heads. Did anyone see chopping off heads? You’ve just started seeing it for the last couple of years … This is a vicious group of animals and we've got to stop them, and we're going to stop them so strong and so fast.”
There was tight security at the rally that included police, Secret Service and K-9 units.
There were reportedly more than a thousand people in attendance, but a Secret Service officer told us there was no exact count on the amount.
The event was free and open to the public.
Trump spoke about several familiar topics and echoed much of what he has said before, such as repealing the Affordable Care Act and building a wall to stop people from entering the country illegally. Also, plenty of time was reserved to bash the other candidates, including Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
Trump took the stage about 45 minutes after the rally started and spoke for more than an hour to attendees here.
The audience was mostly supporters and people who wanted to learn more about Trump's message.
On the flip side, a few dozen protesters held a rally of their own outside of the fairgrounds. The group consisted mostly of immigrants who denounced Trump's appearance and message.
“The message overall is that we don't want Donald Trump in this community,” said George Escobar, senior director for Casa in Action. “This is a very diverse and vibrant community. Nearly 40 percent of Prince William County residents speak a language other than English at home. Nearly 40 percent of the population is of a diverse background. We have somebody running for office on a national level that is speaking to the politics of divisiveness. Really, this is not an area where he should be.”
Trump did bring on stage an African American pastor who supports him. This comes on the heels of his controversial meeting with several African American pastors, but no endorsement.