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Friday, October 21, 2016

Donald Trump appears to have laid out a clear game plan for his campaign: insult every other Republican candidate in the race, like Don Rickles with bizarre hair — and make it harder for any of them to ever win.

We’re not actually suggesting that The Donald is a Democratic plant on a mission to attack and undermine the real GOP candidates from behind their own lines — but if the Dems had tried to engineer such a candidate, they could not possibly have done a better job.

The Democratic National Committee’s own statement on Tuesday certainly seemed to be suppressing glee beneath the tongue-in-cheek tone:

Today, Donald Trump became the second major Republican candidate to announce for president in two days. He adds some much-needed seriousness that has previously been lacking from the GOP field, and we look forward to hearing more about his ideas for the nation.

In an interview Tuesday on Fox News, Bill O’Reilly asked Trump: “Are you going to slash and burn through this Republican field?”

The blunt response: “Well, I don’t have a lot of respect for many of them.”

Trump even got in a word against ex-president George W. Bush, after O’Reilly brought up Bush’s 2007 remarks about being able to look into Russian president Vladimir Putin’s soul. “Bush didn’t have the IQ,” he said.

The insult comic strategy crystalized with The Donald’s epic announcement speech, in which he boasted that the rally itself was superior to all the other candidates’ announcement events:

This is beyond anybody’s expectations. There’s been no crowd like this. And, I can tell, some of the candidates, they went in. They didn’t know the air conditioner didn’t work. They sweated like dogs. They didn’t know the room was too big, because they didn’t have anybody there. How are they going to beat ISIS? I don’t think it’s gonna happen.

He put the crosshairs on Jeb Bush, who had announced the day before: “I mean, you looked at Bush, it took him five days to answer the question on Iraq. He couldn’t answer the question. He didn’t know. I said, ‘Is he intelligent?'”

Trump continued: “He’s weak on immigration. He’s in favor of Common Core. How the hell can you vote for this guy?”

Right after the announcement, he was off to Iowa — where, as The Des Moines Register reports, he continued to attack Jeb Bush, this time for his clothing choices.

“I watched Jeb Bush yesterday,” Trump said, referencing the former Florida governor’s Monday campaign announcement. “He can’t even put on a tie and jacket. He’s running for president. Maybe he knows something I don’t know. Maybe I should take it off because I want to be one of everybody. You know what? You run for president, maybe put on a tie. I thought it was ridiculous.”

He also targeted Marco Rubio — this time on immigration: “Rubio was really weak on immigration, his poll numbers plummeted and all of the sudden he says: ‘Oh, I’m very strong on immigration.’ Well, you know where he is.”

Trump then put a spin on the classic Karl Rove strategy of attacking an opponent for your own weaknesses: “And by the way I have better hair than he does, believe me.”

During the freewheeling Q&A session (below), he took a dig at certain other unnamed candidates for having lost elections by large margins:

You know, these politicians give up nothing. They run, they lose, they win. You got these people, they’re losing elections, now they decide to run for president. Many of them have lost elections. I say wait a minute, she lost, he lost. How do you run for office, and lose by huge margins — I won’t say who — but they lose by these massive margins. And then you’re “Oh, that’s okay, now I’ll run for president.”

(Trump was possibly referring to Carly Fiorina and Rick Santorum, who lost elections for Senate seats in 2010 and 2006, respectively.)

Months before he entered the race, Trump dropped some hints about the kind of petty provocations other candidates could expect from him. Speaking in April on the differences between himself and Rick Santorum, he said, “I have a big plane. He doesn’t.” 

He also trashed Carly Fiorina, his fellow CEO candidate and the only Republican woman in the race, calling her a failed businesswoman and a bad politician:

Look, you have a woman who got fired from her job. And I mean fired viciously. She got fired viciously. She then went out and lost in a landslide when she ran in California for the Senate [to Barbara Boxer in 2010]. And I mean, she lost in a landslide. She got clobbered. And now she’s running for president. Now, I’m all for it. I think she’s a very nice woman. But she got fired. And, she lost in a landslide. Does that qualify you to run for president?

And on Mike Huckabee, he tweeted in May:

But of course, for a man who built his political following in the last campaign cycle by fanning the conspiracy theories about President Obama’s place of birth, he also had to get in some birtherism on the Tea Party candidate who actually was born in another country — Ted Cruz.

“It’s a hurdle and somebody could certainly look at it very seriously,” Trump said in March. Cruz “was born in Canada, if you know, and when we all studied our history lessons, you’re supposed to be born in this country, so I just don’t know how the courts would rule on it. But it’s an additional hurdle that he has that no one else seems to have.”

And maybe, just maybe, Donald Trump could be the man to look at these issues very seriously.

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  • Insinnergy

    This is awesome.

  • The lucky one

    Trump’s perpetual little boy pouty face and his hair make it pretty easy for anyone wanting to retaliate in kind for Trump’s insults.

  • geraldhoey

    The clown bus is almost fully loaded. Still room for Scott Walker though.

  • jmprint

    Trump has never grown out of his moron state. The only country he would be good for is Russia. Putin’s twin!

  • Eleanore Whitaker

    All this proves is what we all suspected…rich men buying the presidency. Trump thinks that his money will always buy him what he wants. He went so far as to pay people to fill that audience where he announced he was running. $50? that’s the price of sucking up to a male bimbo like Trump? Too bad one of those he paid to be in his “audience” ratted him out on public TV.

    • latebloomingrandma

      Aw, Eleanore, and here I thought that the people LOVE him, just as he brags .

      • Eleanore Whitaker

        Late…Methinks all that overdosing on Viagra has men today growing balls too large for their bodies to carry around. All that testosterone is making them incredibly obnoxious. Ergo Trump and his “carpet” vanity and ego. When a guy’s ego is bloated, count on it so are his testicles from too much Viagra.

        • whodatbob

          Nutty, nutty, Eleanore! But, true. Still laughing.

    • bobby

      Not to worry, Trump will never be President, he has a lot of money but not enough to sustain his campaign against the likes of the Koch Bros and other mega rich donors. Every elective office in this Country from the Presidency down is bought and paid for by the rich, thanks to the Supreme Court ruling on Citizen United, that makes it possible to buy elections, under that law a donor can not give money directly to a Candidate, that is why every Candidate have their own Super Pac’s, then it is legal for Corporations to give unlimited amounts of money and unaccountable as to where it originates, in reality this money could be coming from foreign Governments, like China, or maybe Iran. Each Party benefits from Citizen United but most of the mega rich donors are Republicans.

  • latebloomingrandma

    I think Trump should debate Don Rickles. Now that would be worth watching.

  • FT66

    Anyone who watched Rachel Maddow last night on MSNBC where she had a segment of Donald Trump, could understand who gave Donald this huge power he has now. It was GOP themselves who worship him and put him at a level no one can reach, of which he is using it now. Here I mean those who kissed his ring are: Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Sarah Palin, etc. etc. to mention the few.

    • plc97477

      The gotp will always kiss the ring of those with money. The donald may not have brains or ethics but he does have money.

    • Dominick Vila

      The easiest way to get under the skin of people with an ego like Trump’s is to ignore him. This guy does not have a chance in Hell to be nominated, let alone win a national election. That is, unless he is running for dog catcher at Virginia Beach.

  • AgLander

    Trump is an insult clown while Hillary skips the insults and goes directly to getting people killed (Benghazi).

    When you look at it that way, being insulted by a clown doesn’t seem so bad!

    • johninPCFL

      Yeah. Four. GWB had 33 killed on his watch. Where were you then? Crickets.

      • drdroad

        Reagan had over 200!

    • Justin Napolitano

      Christ you ought to get a life. Bush had 13 terrorist attacks and 70 people were killed. Maybe we should investigate that? And then there is 911. How about we have 8 investigations on that?

  • jamcrky

    Pretty soon the GOP will need a clown bus, the clown car is already filled….

    • Winky Cat

      …with a little trailer, attached on the back, for Trump’s collection of “road kill’ that he slaps on his head and calls hair.

  • jtberger

    Trump is head and shoulders over all the others , both Dems and Repubs. The big wall should have been built 30 years ago. And Mexico would gladly pay for it. We have a war on drugs… WHAT A JOKE THAT IS. It is more of a pillow fight. Trump would stop 95% of the illegal immigrants and 90% of the drugs… almost overnight.
    He would bring back many of the jobs… that we allowed big business to move to Asia and Mexico.
    He cut off ISIS oil sales … and that would be the end of them.
    And he’d make friends with Putin… something we should have done a long time ago.
    Three cheers for the DONALD.
    Young Americans need jobs at home … building our infrastructure… not wasting their time and blood and our money in many foreign countries. Our military adventures abroad have been nothing short of disasterous. As Trump says…. “everybody hates us now…” and with good reason. What a gigantic disaster Iraq and Libya and Syria and Ukraine and Russia have turned out to be.
    He will not likely get elected… but at least we will hear a lot of common sense for a change. Instead we have a Plutocracy in which all the candidates pander to the special interest groups trying to buy their votes with taxpayers money.

    • johninPCFL

      How, exactly, would Trump (or any other president) FORCE companies operating in a free economy to bring back jobs?

      The only way a company brings jobs back to the US in when the cost of labor here is lower than there (wherever there is.)

      • jtberger

        All he would have to do is slap a huge tax on foreign owned companies and put tariffs on their goods coming into the USA and that would be the end of it.
        Yes if we allow our companies to move abroad with impunity… then of course they will do it. FREE TRADE would not be quite as free as it used to be.

        • Justin Napolitano

          Sure, that would work and then they would put a huge tariff on our goods and then we could have a trade war. Everyone would lose that war.

          • jtberger

            That is not how it works.
            They need us much more than we need them.
            As things stand now … alll the cheap goods imported from abroad benefits the middle and upper classes. But then we have to keep the unemployed lower classes supplied with welfare. and after all is said and done those cheap foreign imports cost us more in the end.
            I think Trump knows what he is doing… much more than all the boneheads now in office.

        • johninPCFL

          1) Tax rates are set by Congress, not the president.
          2) The GOP has been opposed to any tax increases for two decades.
          3) Trump is running as a GOP candidate.

          Therefore, Trump would not propose raising taxes, Congress would not approve raising taxes, and the plutocrats running the businesses would not allow the government to raise taxes.

          • jtberger

            What you say may well be true… but at least we would have one voice making some sense. As things stand now we are a civilization in rapid decline. And Trump makes a lot more sense than anybody else i’ve heard lately.

          • johninPCFL

            How is a voice not advocating what you claim is necessary (remember: he won’t demand higher taxes) “making some sense”? He will continue to proclaim that lower taxes will stimulate growth even though we have now run several government “tax rate experiments” that prove otherwise.

            Congress under Reagan raised taxes 13 times after cutting them once, and the growth attributed to his “tax cut” was due to the $4T he added to the national debt (spent on military expenditures: remember $700 hammers and $1200 toilet seats?) Our best growth decades started during the Eisenhower period when the top tax rate was 95%. How is this possible? Well, maybe the top earners figured that they’d spend it on business expansion instead of taxes. Nobody paid the top tax rate (except Hollywood stars), but businesses grew like weeds.

        • Camille Field

          Gee, he wouldn’t be able to get his wardrobe that is made in China…

      • jtberger

        The guy is a businessman. He knows exactly how the tax system can be used by governments to get people to do whatever they want them to do. NO SWEAT.

    • The lucky one

      It’s take more than hot air to accomplish what you say “The Dullard” will do. Does anyone really think he’s seriously running for president? This is all about the publicity he will get and the chance to strut around. His business “success” is highly overrated with his FOUR bankruptcies. He is good at making a profit and then letting others feel the pain when the bubble bursts (Come to think of it that does sort of make him presidential). I do believe he and Putin would get along, or at least as well as the mafia bosses do with each other.

    • Camille Field

      Common sense? He says our government is sending things out of the country taking away jobs here for us. How come his ties are made in China? Gee, I think he took jobs from here and sent them overseas.

  • Justin Napolitano

    A Fucing wall? Try joining the twenty-first century. Millions of people come here by airplane with a valid visa and then stay after the visa runs out. A wall? What, you want a wall 80,000 feet high?

  • dpaano

    See, I keep telling everyone that I think he’s a Democratic plant!!! He’s pointing out all the ridiculousness of the other candidates with his ranting, and he’s alienating the base that the GOP is trying hard to reach. Makes you think, doesn’t it?