For a night, Donald Trump seemed to feel at home.
A few blocks from Trump Tower in midtown Manhattan, he accepted the Conservative Party of New York’s nomination for president, pointing to a man in the crowd and saying that this was a room in which he “really knew” people. He boasted about how he’ll put New York in play against Hillary Clinton.
And in unscripted Trump fashion, he told a lengthy story about one of his favourite New York-related topics: his mid-1980s takeover of the Wollman Rink renovations in Central Park, just near Trump Tower. He spoke of how the city screwed up its years-long effort to get the ice rink up and running, and that he was able to have it finished in a matter of months.
“This was no joke,” a woman in the crowd said, as the audience laughed at his pot-shots directed at 1980s New York politicians with whom they were all familiar.
Speaking in front of a small crowd of about 100 people in midtown Manhattan, Trump accepted the Conservative Party’s nomination, which is possible under a quirky New York election law that allows multiple parties to nominate the same ticket. It was part of a Manhattan double feature for Trump on Wednesday. He appeared along with Hillary Clinton as MSNBC’s Commander-in-Chief Forum later.
For Trump, the earlier event was a rare occasion that hearkened back to earlier in the summer of the presidential campaign. The speech Trump gave following his acceptance was unscripted. No teleprompters.
The Republican nominee promised to challenge Clinton in New York, where he’s trailing miserably in the polls. He said his recent trip to Mexico “worked out really well.” And he joked that he was “sure” that the Commander-in-Chief forum with NBC’s Matt Lauer later that night would be “fair.”
With limited time to speak before heading off to the NBC forum, Trump wrapped up his remarks by touting his New York roots while making a plea to the state.
If New Yorkers wanted one of their own in the oval office, Trump said, “you will never get more of a New Yorker than you will get with me.”
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