What Trump should have said to Megyn Kelly

Trump kept digging. Basically, he confirmed the implication of Megyn Kelly’s question, and then he threatened her. And in case anyone missed it, when later whining about her questions Trump snidely suggested that Kelly’s tough questioning was attributable to menstruation. When called on this appalling remark, he dissembled about it and went on the attack. Anyone who thought he meant what he obviously meant, he claimed, was “a deviant.” Strike three, Mr. Trump, take a seat.

If any other candidate in the 2016 race had behaved this way, Trump would have called them “stupid” or “losers” or “total losers” or “morons” or “idiots” or some variation of his favorite words. It’s easy to criticize The Donald—irresistible, really—but that is not necessarily constructive. The man says he is running for president. For now, he’s doing so as a Republican, the party of Lincoln, Eisenhower, and Reagan.  So out of regard for their memory, perhaps it would be helpful to tell Trump what he should have said:

“Megyn, without recalling the context of all those quotes, I will promise that you won’t hear me disparaging women in this campaign. I love women and respect them—I think we should’ve had Carly Fiorina on this stage. But I’ve operated in a different arena. Commercial real estate is a rough world, and sexist—and I’ve brought women into that business. ‘The Apprentice’ is entertainment, and a bit of outlandishness helps ratings—as everyone at Fox News knows.