Published Monday, Oct. 12, 2015 | 6:15 p.m.
Updated Monday, Oct. 12, 2015 | 7 p.m.
In a surprise move the day before the first Democratic presidential debate, Hillary Clinton protested Donald Trump and his Las Vegas hotel’s labor polices along with hundreds of members of the Culinary Union Local 226 and Trump International Hotel employees.
In an unscheduled appearance, the Democratic presidential front-runner bashed the GOP’s leading presidential candidate and real estate mogul.
She hopped out of an SUV, spoke for less than three minutes and then exited the premises. Protestors in the back of the crowd couldn’t even see the candidate, but her voice echoed through a speaker system above loud cheers.
She told the crowd that they have the right to organize and the right to a living wage.
"That means saying no to Donald Trump," she said, referring to the presidential candidate who owns the hotel.
More than 500 workers from the Culinary Union, the American Postal Workers Union and the Trump International Hotel lined up on Fashion Show Drive to protest the hotel’s no-union policy.
Mounted police and dozens of officers on foot closed off part of the road while the more than 250 protesters gathered to bash Trump and continue the effort to unionize his hotel.
The Culinary and the Trump property have clashed over unionizing for about a year. About 500 Trump International employees are working with the Culinary to unionize the hotel's labor pool.
Maria Elena Durazo, a six-year Trump International Hotel Employee, spoke to the crowd while union members waved flags and held signs that read “no contract, no peace.”
“Mr. Trump says, 'Make America great again.' Well, the Trump workers say, ‘Start here,’” she said.
Democratic Rep. Dina Titus also attended the event, saying, “Señor Trump, can you hear us. We are Culinary strong."
In Tuesday’s debate, Clinton will square off against her current rival and union supporter in the Democratic primaries, Bernie Sanders. The 74-year-old Vermont senator is nipping at Clinton’s heels in the polls, raising millions, drawing large crowds to his events and championing unions.
The Culinary Union has yet to endorse any candidate. Its support would position Clinton to win the Nevada caucus, the nation’s third presidential nominating contest that takes place Feb. 20.
With 55,000 members, the Culinary Union is Nevada’s largest labor group and one of the state’s political power players. In past elections, it has bused employees to polls, mobilized grass-roots support and raised money for candidates.
While the quick stop sparked excitement for the Culinary, the union didn't publicly endorse Clinton immediately after.
"We welcome Hillary Clinton to the streets of Las Vegas where workers are fighting for justice and respect at the Trump Hotel," said Culinary spokeswoman Bethany Khan.