BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Donald Trump is one man who is known for speaking his mind. On Friday night he was in town to host an Erie County Republican party fundraiser.
About 600 guests attended the Erie County Republican Committee's Lincoln Leadership Reception at Salvatore's Italian Gardens in Depew.
During prepared remarks at the podium Trump assailed New York State's high tax rate and criticized the SAFE Act gun control legislation, which he called a "disaster."
In a subsequent question-and-answer session with reporters he reasserted his intention to run only if there are no other Republican candidates, precluding the opportunity for a Republican primary prior to November's election.
Tickets for the event were sold for $100 dollars, or $500 dollars per couple for VIP packages.
2 On Your Side spoke to Chairman Nick Langworthy about where the money will go.
"The checks are payable to the Erie County Republican Committee. This is our annual fundraiser to benefit the local Republican Party," he said.
Langworthy tells us it's not a fundraising event for Trump, who made it very clear that he will self-finance the race if he runs. As for the funds raised on Friday, "They could be used for any race that we are invested to endorse," Langworthy said.
"I've met him twice in New York and thought it was a good opportunity to bring him here," Langworthy said while explaining why Trump is visiting Buffalo. "Have a big event and showcase Buffalo and he's making his decision. … I think the response he gets here in Buffalo will help him along that process."
In terms of attendance, the Trump gala is already shaping up to be the largest reception the Erie County Republican Committee has ever held.
Trump to WNY