VAN SUSTEREN: I know 2016 seems like a long time away, with everyone in Iowa last weekend, including yourself… What is it going to take for the Republicans to win back the White House in 2016?
TRUMP: 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.
VAN SUSTEREN: Two questions. Let me ask you the first one. What would a Hillary Clinton presidency look like? The second one is, who could beat her?
TRUMP: Well, a lot of things, 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. … I do think I can make fabulous deals for the country. I think I could make the country great again. I think I could make the country rich again. … The fact is our country is in serious economic trouble and you would ideally think that somebody coming out of business who has done very well in business who understands debt, who understands payrolls, who understands problems, you would think somebody like that would be good.
And etcetera. I was jesting above, of course, because this really is less serious than even Joe Biden’s looming potential candidacy (…oof). It’s just Donald Trump doing what Donald Trump does best — gunning after the publicity that he is very likely to freely receive and issuing grandiose proclamations about he could do everything bigger and better than any layman GOP candidate.
The media attention is already swirling, no doubt fueled along by the current off-year, slow-news summerfest, but I think it’s safe to say we don’t need to live in anticipation of a real-deal Donald Trump presidential bid. I am a little worried about a repeat of what David Weigel calls the Trump trauma of 2011 — ’cause “trauma” is probably a pretty good word for that erstwhile circus act.