Candidates Line Up for Trump Support

Monday, 19 Sep 2011 09:01 AM

By James Hirsen

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Donald Trump has a new political reality show of sorts.

Even though Trump pulled out of his bid for the GOP nomination, Republican presidential wannabes are queuing up at Trump's boardroom door to try and win the top kudos in what could be called his "GOP Presidential Apprentice" show.

Mitt Romney is the latest candidate to seek an audience with The Donald. The former Massachusetts governor is scheduled to meet with the real estate and reality TV mogul on Sept. 26 at the Trump Towers offices.

According to an officer of the Trump organization, it was Romney who initiated a sit-down with Trump.

Romney's top opponents, though, were ahead of him in seeking to get in Trump's good graces. In May of 2011, potential presidential candidate Sarah Palin got together with Trump at his Manhattan residence. Following the meeting Trump referred to Palin as a "terrific woman and a terrific friend" who he hoped would seek the GOP presidential nomination.

Michele Bachmann reportedly met with Trump back in July of 2011. Trump talked about meeting with Bachmann on CNN's "Piers Morgan Tonight." "I was very impressed with her, and I think she's highly underrated," he said. "I think she's very good."

Trump and GOP frontrunner Rick Perry dined out at the Jean-Georges restaurant, which overlooks Central Park. The two reportedly discussed topics that included China and the jobs crisis. Trump called Perry a "terrific guy" and said that his meeting with the Texas governor "went really well." Perry had set up the meeting about two months prior.

Trump is critical of the large field of GOP candidates that are currently running. "I think we have too many of them," he said. "Some of them just don't have a chance. It would be better if they would clear out so you don't have to listen to their answers."

Trump plans to pick a "winner" of his would-be "GOP Presidential Apprentice" show after he has fully evaluated the candidates. The finale prize would be a plum Trump endorsement.

He demonstrated his sizable endorsement power in New York's recent special election for former Democrat Congressman Anthony Weiner's seat. Trump backed the Republican winner, Bob Turner. Turner won the heavily Democratic Queens-Brooklyn district by a surprisingly wide margin of 54 percent to 46 percent.

Trump had recorded a robocall, which told those on the other end of the receiver, "This is Donald Trump, and I'm not calling to fire you, as we say on 'The Apprentice.' I'm calling to fire you up!"

While appearing on ABC, Michael Cohen, Trump's lawyer, referred to his billionaire client as "the Godfather of politics." Cohen told the New York Post, "Everyone wants Mr. Trump's support."

However, one disturbing item about Trump's political activities was revealed by Cohen. He told CBS News that even as Trump assesses the GOP candidates, he's still not exactly out of the race.

"After 'The Apprentice' is over in June," Cohen said, "if he's still not happy with the choices, we are all ready to launch a campaign for him as a third-party candidate, as an Independent."

Unfortunately, if Trump decides to run as a third-party candidate, the likely winner of his presidential reality show would be none other than the current occupant of the White House.

James Hirsen, J.D., M.A. in media psychology, is a New York Times best-selling author, media analyst, and law professor. He is admitted to practice in the U.S. Supreme Court and has made several appearances there on landmark decisions. Hirsen is the co-founder and chief legal counsel for Visit Newsmax TV Hollywood:

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