Donald Trump predicted that if Republicans don’t have “the perfect candidate” in 2016 they will lose to Hillary Clinton — who, he said, will be tougher to defeat than President Obama.
On Fox last night, Trump called Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who worked the circuit in Iowa last weekend, “both interesting guys” with “something to say.”
“And everybody has something to say, I guess, but some of their ideas are good. I met actually Ted Cruz the other day for the first time in Iowa. I thought he was a terrific guy. I met his father, also terrific. And we had a great conversation,” the real estate mogul added.
But to win in 2016, he said, “it’s going to take the perfect candidate — tough, smart, compassionate.”
“If you don’t have the perfect candidate, Hillary will be president. I assume she’s going to get the nomination, it looks like that way, assuming good health and lots of other things. It would certainly seem Hillary’s going to get the nomination and she will be tougher to beat. Actually, she’ll be tougher to beat than president Obama in my opinion. So they need the perfect candidate,” Trump continued.
“We’re dealing with years away, and it’s very hard to say who could beat her. It could be a person that hasn’t emerged. It could be something we’re talking about. It could be a lot of different people maybe. But I think she’s going to be tough.”
A Clinton presidency, he predicted, would likely be “very similar to what we have now.”
“If you look historically at candidates whose names get batted around, whether it’s Governor Christie in the Republican Party or Senator Rand Paul or Senator Marco Rubio or Senator Ted Cruz or anyone in the Republican party, they all seem to have a policy legislative background, not real rich in terms of business. And then have you Governor Romney who did, but he hit the skids. So I’m thinking, what’s your ideal candidate?” Trump said.
“I think Governor Romney just didn’t stress the business enough. That was his strength, and he should have gone out there and bragged about what he did. He did a good job. What he should have done is told people this is what we can do. And for some reason that just got lost. It never really came out the way it should have come out.”
He added that Republicans can take a lesson in finding a winning candidate by what happened to the Democratic field in 2008.
“Somebody said it might be somebody you’ve never heard of. Look what happened with Barack Obama. It was going to be Hillary, it was an easy Hillary victory, and Barack Obama emerged. And you have to give him credit for that,” said Trump.
The golf club owner also complimented Obama on his skills out on the green.
“I thought he had a good chipping motion. I know a lot about golf. I’ve won many club championships. I thought he had a good chipping motion, so I was impressed, and maybe he’ll like to hear that. But his motion as a chipper looked very good,” Trump said.
“…I’ve never been one to take three-week extended vacations. I think I go a little bit up here. I just couldn’t do it. I wouldn’t want to be away that long. I noticed some of the politicians and the president certainly fits into that category. They really like those long term vacations. I don’t get it.”