Donald Trump gives a not-a-campaign speech at a luncheon for the Portsmouth Rotary Club in New Hampshire, the home of the earliest Republican presidential primary.
The event draws a bigger audience than other club events for verified Republican candidates, including Sen. Bob Dole, Rep. Jack Kemp, and Rev. Pat Robertson. Outside, college students hold up signs that say “Trump For President” and “Trump in ’88.”
Trump was invited by Michael Dunbar, a local Republican organizer who launched a Draft Trump movement in hopes that the foul-mouthed, fake billionaire would enter the race. His hopes are dashed within moments of Trump’s speech.
On the morning of Oct. 22, Dunbar picked Trump up at the landing field in a limousine and whisked him to the restaurant. The crowd inside was bigger than any declared candidate had or would attract there.
Looking at the crowd, Dunbar had a “what have I wrought?” moment, followed by a rude shock. Trump began by announcing he was not interested in running for president.USA Today
Trump tells the crowd that the United States must stop providing aid to our financially inferior allies, echoing other political statements he’s made since his trip to Russia. Instead of helping them, Trump says, we should make them pay us.
He goes on to claim that the problem with D.C. is that there are too many “nice people,” and he says it’s time to attack Iran and commandeer their oil fields.
More than 25 local and national journalists are there to cover his visit. Trump arrived in New Hampshire on his military helicopter, “Ivana,” which is maintained by a known mafia associate and cocaine trafficker.
A couple months ago, Trump refused to say whether or not he would run for president. The longer he waited, the less chance he had of out-fundraising other candidates.
Photo: Mike Dunbar via Politico