Trump marks campaign anniversary in Texas

Crowd listens to Donald Trump (WDTN Photo / Mike Burianek)

DALLAS (AP) — Donald Trump marked the one-year anniversary of his Republican presidential campaign launch with a rally in Dallas on Thursday that offered a heavy dose of nostalgia.

The presumptive Republican nominee spent much of the rally Thursday night at a Dallas concert space recounting his victories during his party’s hard-fought primary, offering a state-by-state recap.

“This is the one-year anniversary, and hopefully we’re going to make it a worthwhile year,” he said.

Trump did not mention by name one of his former rivals, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz — who won the Texas primary handily and has yet to endorse Trump.

Trump told the crowd that he expects winning the general election against likely rival Hillary Clinton in November to be more difficult than the primary because of a dishonest press.

“You know, it’s funny. I didn’t love the press during the primaries, but now it’s, like, brutal,” he said.

Trump joked about riding a mechanical bull at the rally, but seemed a little confused by the concept.

“I read about this place,” Trump told a crowd at Gilley’s Dallas South Side Ballroom. “Where’s that horse?”

Trump appeared to be referring to the venue’s mechanical bull. The original Gilley’s and its bull were featured prominently in the 1980 movie “Urban Cowboy.”

Trump predicted his ride would be a smash in the news.

“Hey, you want to hit the papers tomorrow? Let’s get that horse. I’ll ride that horse,” said Trump. “The problem is, even if I make it, they’ll say I fell off the horse and it was terrible.”

Trump was also inspired by a protester’s cowboy hat and suggested selling a “Make America Great Again” version.

Earlier Thursday, Republican national security official Richard Armitage revealed that he was supporting Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton over Trump.

Clinton’s campaign says the George W. Bush’s former deputy secretary of state has endorsed her candidacy. Armitage told Politico that Trump “doesn’t appear to be a Republican” and “doesn’t appear to want to learn about the issues.”

Armitage refused to confirm his support for Clinton to the Associated Press.

He is the most prominent Republican to back Clinton. Dozens of foreign policy and national security experts signed a letter earlier this year opposing Trump but few have openly said they will vote for Clinton. They say Trump’s views on international affairs are inconsistent and would make the country less safe.

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