Trump says he regrets offending people with how he speaks Naked Trump leaves New York in giggles
CHARLOTTE — Donald Trump made a rare act of contrition on Thursday, saying he regretted offending people with his harsh way of speaking.
The Republican nominee made the gesture at his first rally since ordering a shakeup in his campaign to save his struggling White House bid.
“Sometimes in the heat of debate and speaking on a multitude of issues, you don’t choose the right words or you say the wrong thing,” Trump told a rally in Charlotte, North Carolina.
“I have done that. And believe it or not, I regret it,” he said, drawing laughs and applause from the crowd. “I do regret it. Particularly where it may have caused personal pain.”
He added: “Too much is at stake for us to be consumed with these issues, but one thing, I can promise you this: I will always tell you the truth.”
The New York billionaire’s multiple self-inflicted wounds of late have left him trailing in virtually every battleground state. One of the biggest missteps was clashing repeatedly with the parents of an Army captain killed in Iraq.
Critics accused him last week of inciting violence against his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton in a remark about the right to bear arms, and media reports have swirled about a campaign in crisis and a candidate apparently incapable of reeling in crass remarks.
Clinton leads Trump 47 percent to 41.2 percent, according to the Real Clear Politics polling average, following weeks of errors that have alienated establishment Republicans and seen his own supporters tear their hair out.
On Wednesday, Trump appointed right-wing news executive Stephen Bannon as campaign CEO and promoted pollster Kellyanne Conway to campaign manager.
The change was seen as a demotion for campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who has been pushing Trump to, among other NEW YORK — A naked statue of Donald Trump, complete with bulging belly and elaborate yellow hair, caused laughter and merriment in New York on Thursday until it was demolished by park wardens.
Hands clasped across ample belly, the sculpture was unveiled in Union Square, gazing out across a busy street with an engraved plaque saying “The Emperor Has No Balls,” witnesses said.
Four other naked Trump statues appeared on Thursday in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle and Ohio, according to social media posts. Indecline, a California-based company, released a video on its website showing naked statues of the controversial Republican presidential nominee being made.
But New York’s department of parks and recreation
changes, use a teleprompter when he gives speeches as a way to stay on message —and not ad-lib himself into saying something offensive or wrong.
Bannon’s Breitbart News website is virulently anti-Clinton and his appointment was seen as Trump’s way of thumbing his nose at Republican leaders who have been urging him to tone down the shoot-from-the-hip style of speech he used effectively in the primaries.
On Thursday, Trump did speak with a teleprompter and veered from the invisible screens only to hammer away at a given point he wanted to make.
On substantive issues, he reached out to US minorities, in was unimpressed. Wardens ripped the statue from its base before using shovels to smash its feet and foam base to smithereens, and pry its metal platform from the ground. “NYC Parks stands firmly against any unpermitted erection in city parks, no matter how small,” a spokesperson told AFP in an email.
Throughout the morning, passers-by stopped to take photographs, pose for selfies and laugh at the depiction of the New York billionaire.
“It was funny. Everybody was just over here laughing and taking pictures,” said Rahshawn Gilmore (22) who works in a nearby store. “It was amazing.”
Although Gilmore said he did not find the statue offensive, he admitted some might because children were “roaming around.”
“Nearly four in ten African-American children are living in poverty. I will not rest until children of every colour in this country are fully included in the American Dream,” Trump said.
“If African-American voters give Donald Trump a chance by giving me their vote, the result for them will be amazing,” he said.
And he began his speech with a message to the people of Louisiana, a state that has been hit with historic flooding in recent days.
“We are one country, one people, and we will have together one great future,” Trump told the crowd. “You could see his personal bits,” he explained. “That was great craftsmanship, because they’re having a hard time taking that apart,” he added, breaking into giggles.
Peri Fisher, 48, a representative for an electronics company, said she was pleased to see a male politician being judged on his appearance “for a change,” criticising the decision to destroy the statue.
“Personally, I think Trump is insane and not fit to be president, not that (Democratic rival) Hillary Clinton really is either, but she’s the lesser of two evils,” she said.
“Right or wrong, people have the right to put it up there,” she added. “He’s a public figure —public figures are open to mockery. This was a mockery. It’s just part of the American way of life.” — AFP
He still stressed his standard campaign pillars of building a wall along the border with Mexico, keeping out undocumented foreigners and opposing international trade accords.
And he also depicted himself as an agent of change compared to Clinton, whom he dismissed as an old-fashioned Washington insider, while promising to strengthen US ethics rules to fight influence peddling.
Following the speech, Democrats scoffed at the idea of a more tolerant and consensus-oriented Trump.
“That apology tonight is simply a well-written phrase until he tells us which of his many offensive, bullying and divisive comments he regrets — and changes his tune altogether,” said Christina Reynolds, a Clinton campaign spokeswoman.
But the “new” Trump — disciplined and serious —was already gaining traction with fans.
“I loved the tone,” said Annette Fitch, 55, a customer service representative who was at the speech.
But another supporter, 71-year old high school Principal Hans Peter Plotseneder, said he regretted the candidate had lost “a little bit of personal touch.”
“I hope he doesn’t get too PC,” he said. — AFP