“I am malleable,” Trump said, taking it as a compliment, more like I’ve called him flexible. He sounds sleepy, calling at 7 a.m. Friday from his Versailles-like Fifth Avenue penthouse, where he went for a nap after his veterans event here Thursday night, before returning to New Hampshire and Iowa. He is still so new at politics that he coyly uses the phrase “being on the trail, as they say.”
He says about his chances in Iowa that he’s a good “closer”: “Even in golf, I’ve won a lot of club championships that way. Closing is not an easy thing.”
He rejects the idea that he’s too easily swayed by compliments or slights, too easily prone to pouts and feuds.
“Putin said Donald Trump was absolutely brilliant and would win the election,” he said. “My rival wanted me to disavow it. The head of Russia calls me brilliant and you want me to disavow it? What are you smoking?”