Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump thought his campaign was being described during a town hall meeting in Charleston, South Carolina, but it was actually that of a Democratic presidential candidate (video below).
“I wanted to describe a candidate to you,” MSNBC anchor Mika Brzezinski said to Trump at the Feb. 17 town hall meeting.
“That candidate is considered a political outsider by all of the pundits,” she said. "He’s tapping into the anger of voters, delivers a populist message. He believes everyone in the country should have health care [and] he advocates for hedge fund managers to pay higher taxes,” Brzezinski added. "He is drawing thousands of people at his rallies and bringing in a lot of new voters into the political process. And he is not beholden to any super PAC. Who am I describing?”
“You’re describing Donald Trump,” the Republican presidential candidate responded, after adding the described candidate is also not beholden to “any special interests or any donors.”
Trump’s assumption that he was being described was a mistake.
“Actually, I was describing [Sen.] Bernie Sanders [of Vermont],” Brzezinski countered.
“Well, that’s good,” Trump said.
“I’ll tell you, there’s one thing we’re very similar in,” Trump said of Sanders, who describes himself as a Democratic socialist. "He knows that our country is being ripped off big league, big league, on trade. The problem is, he can’t do anything about it, he’s not going to be able to, whereas I’m going to do things."
“We’re negotiating against great negotiators. China, Mexico [and] Japan -- we’re going to start doing great things with those. And that’s the thing -- Bernie Sanders can’t do it,” Trump said, arguing that the Vermont senator lacks his comprehension of global markets and deal-making.
When asked which Democratic presidential candidate he would like to run against, Trump chose former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
“I’d love to beat Hillary,” Trump said.
According to a Quinnipiac University Poll released Feb. 18, Trump would have to try hard to beat either Democratic candidate, but his odds of winning against Clinton are higher.
The poll found that Sanders would beat Trump in the general election 48 to 42 percent. The margin is smaller in a Clinton vs. Trump match-up: 44 to 43, with her taking the White House by just 1 point.