Thousands turned out on Monday for an anti-Trump “March for Truth” in El Paso, Texas, with Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas), just hours before President Trump held a rally less than half a mile away calling for his border wall.
O’Rourke, the former El Paso congressman and possible 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, told the crowd that El Paso “one of the safest cities in the United States of America. …safe, not because of walls — but in spite of walls.”
“We stand for America, and we stand against walls. We are going to make a stand,” he said at the “March for Truth: Stop the Wall, Stop the Lies” rally.
Video from the event showed some protestors repeatedly chanting “build bridges, not walls” as they marched along the border fence separating El Paso from Ciudad Juarez.
Many demonstrators held signs condemning Trump’s rhetoric on immigration. One read, “Trump made America hate again.” Another sign read, “make tacos, not walls.”
— Rafael Carranza (@RafaelCarranza) February 12, 2019
Estimating crowd sizes is a miserable business but I’d guess a few thousand folks here so far. pic.twitter.com/zDLJi6Mm0S
— Garrett Haake (@GarrettHaake) February 12, 2019
Veronica Sanchez, 23, Chamverino, NM pic.twitter.com/lWs9JVtzCV
— Molly Hennessy-Fiske (@mollyhf) February 11, 2019
Some very polite protesters here. pic.twitter.com/is88pmonqT
— Eric Bradner (@ericbradner) February 12, 2019
Around the same time, Trump told supporters: “A young man who’s got very little going for himself except he’s got a great first name, he challenged us.”
The president said the crowd size at O’Rourke’s rally “not too good,” adding, “What I would say is, that may be the end of his presidential bid.”
Trump mocks Beto: "But a young man who's got very little going for himself except he has a great first name. He challenged us. So we have let's say 35,000 people tonight. And he has 200 people, 300 people. Not too good"
"I would say that may be the end of his presidential bid" pic.twitter.com/mu8LlCJcBr
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) February 12, 2019
The rally and march that O’Rourke headlined sought to “show the country the reality of the border,” according to a statement released by O’Rourke’s office Friday.
“Beto O’Rourke will join with his city on Monday evening to show the country the reality of the border — a vibrant, safe, binational community that proudly celebrates its culture, history, diversity and status as a city of immigrants,” the statement said before the rally.