OTR Interviews

Trump: They all come after me, it only drives my numbers up

GOP 2016 frontrunner Donald Trump goes 'On the Record' on his big victory in the NH primary, challenge ahead in SC, the NY Daily News' attacks on him, ex-Romney staffers forming a PAC against him, Carly Fiorina ending her campaign and more


This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," February 10, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: This is a "Fox News" alert. The Republican field is shrinking. Just hours after the New Hampshire primary, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina both suspending their campaigns, meaning they are dropping out. Now this after lackluster showings in New Hampshire.

And last night's big winner, Donald Trump. And the big surprise, Ohio Governor John Kasich. He came out strong and finished in second place. And now the race heads south. Just before hopping on his plane and jetting off to South Carolina, New Hampshire winner Donald Trump went ON THE RECORD.


VAN SUSTEREN: Donald, nice to see you and thank you for joining us.


VAN SUSTEREN: Well, Donald, last night, it was a whopping victory, 20 points in New Hampshire. It's more fun to win, isn't it?

TRUMP: I love winning. It was a great win. It was a great victory. We love it.

VAN SUSTEREN: Why do you think that on the Democratic side of the aisle that Hillary Clinton got -- she got clobbered by Bernie Sanders, 22 points over there.

TRUMP: Yes it was surprising to see. And, you know, we are dealing with a socialist, perhaps even a communist. I listen to his speech last night. That was beyond socialism. So I don't know what's going on over there. That was a pretty big victory for him.

VAN SUSTEREN: One of your hometown newspapers, "The Daily News," Mort Zuckerman owns that and they had a pretty hostile cover front page to you. What's up with that?

TRUMP: Well, I know him. He's an insecure guy. He's got a losing newspaper. He tried to sell it for the last two years. He can't get anybody to give him a dollar for it. It's a piece of garbage. And they put me on the cover every time they can. They always put me on the cover to try and sell the newspapers. It's going to fold up.

I can't imagine anybody buying it. I mean, he's literally been begging people to buy it. But he's just an insecure guy. He's a loser.

VAN SUSTEREN: Governor Chris Christie, you spoke last night. You had a long conversation. I assume that he congratulated you on your victory. What else did he tell you?

TRUMP: Well, I just spoke to him a little while ago, again. And he spoke to me last night. And, you know, he's a friend of mine. He's a good guy? He is a tough cookie.

VAN SUSTEREN: Also down in South Carolina, that's the next spot you are going. There is a former 2012 Romney campaign staff or consultant who has now got this Super PAC and it's taking a direct aim at you. Going up at the air. Your response to that Super PAC? They're aiming at you.

TRUMP: Well, a lot of people have been aiming at me. You know, they are all aiming at me, I guess, and that's fine. And so far it's been only driving my numbers up. They should have devoted more time to Mitt Romney and helped him win instead of looking at, you know, taking other people down. But they have all been going after me. I've had, I guess, Bush spent 20 or $25 million on me. And he's like nowhere. He's going nowhere.

And now Romney is doing a PAC, because Romney feels badly because frankly that was an election that he should have won. You know it and I know it. Four years ago, they should have won that election easily and they failed. So these people that -- these ex-Romney people should have focused more on getting Romney elected instead of doing Super PACs.

VAN SUSTEREN: Is your strategy going to change much going into South Carolina? I mean, we're back to population or voting demographic, highly evangelical. Are you changing your strategy between New Hampshire and South Carolina?

TRUMP: Not, too much. We really hit a chord. You know, we are talking about border security. We're talking about the military, the vets. And, you know, things that are pretty generic no matter where you are. I do great with the evangelicals. We have a great relationship. And I'm leading in evangelical vote in polling numbers, as you know, Greta. I'm leading over the nation. Throughout the nation I'm leading. And that's a great honor.

And I don't think too much. Really strong military, great trade deals. You know, something I have been talking about right from the beginning. We want really great trade deals which we don't have now. We lose hundreds and hundreds of billions of dollars on trade. I mean, just with China alone, we lose that. So, you know, I think the message is going to stay pretty much the same.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. The news today and some of the business news today is that Sears is going to accelerate the closing of 50 stores. And, you know, we always talk sort of big picture about politics. But closing 50 stores are really going to hurt a lot of families.

If you are president today, is there anything you would say or do because these families, they are going to take the big hit.

TRUMP: Well, the retailers have a lot of problems. Whether it's Sears or Macy's or any of them because it's sort of like becoming an older line business. But I don't know, Sears it looks like more of a financial play than anything else. You know, something is going to happen. They will either rent those stores or we rent the stores and they'll be knocked down and a building will be put there. It will all work out. Eventually, it will all work out.

It doesn't look very good right now. I saw that. And Sears has a major headache as a company, you know that.

VAN SUSTEREN: I went to Facebook and put your picture up and asked some questions. And Michael Patrick Martin, one of my Facebook people who likes me on Facebook says, what does it say about the polarization of the country that a socialist is winning the Democratic primary and how can you, that would be Donald Trump, compete in a general election with an opponent who claims virtually everything will be free.

TRUMP: Well, because the taxes are not going to be free. Your taxes are going to be 95 percent. If you look at what this guy wants to do. I mean, frankly, they should be about 120 percent, if you really want to know the truth. Everything he wants to give away. You are talking about like 95 percent tax. Well, eventually, that will be explained. I'll explain it.

VAN SUSTEREN: How do you run against it?


TRUMP: You run against it by explaining it. What I explained is just what I explained.



VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Another question -- another --

TRUMP: Who's going to pay 95 percent tax? You literally would have to pay 95 percent tax to pay what this guy wants to do. I mean, he wants to take everything away from one group. But the truth is, once you get the taxes beyond a certain point, he is unelectable.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Catherine Hagan, also on my Facebook page, says she's heard a lot about politicians talking about helping the vets and other people. But she says what about our seniors? And I see a lot of questions like, you know, if you are president, what are you going to do about social security and what about seniors?

TRUMP: Well, you know, it's a great question, because I spent a lot of time with the vets and helping the vets. And people don't talk about the seniors. I'm talking about the seniors and I have been for a long while.

The seniors are in a lot of trouble. And now they are talking about many people. They are talking about cutting social security. I am not going to cut social security. I'm bringing the jobs back. I'm lowering taxes. We're going to have a dynamic economy again, Greta. And we're not cutting social security.

VAN SUSTEREN: We're just -- today, Carly Fiorina suspended her campaign. I don't know if you know that yet. But any thoughts about Carly's suspending hers?

TRUMP: Well, I thought she was very nice. I thought she was very effective in a lot of different ways. I didn't know she suspended, but, you know, you have to do what you have to do. And we will see what happens with Chris, likewise.

VAN SUSTEREN: One other question from Facebook. And I know you get this one a lot, but this is from Pat Myville (ph) and it says, why don't you act more presidential?

I like you, but I don't like the bad words that you insert into your speech.

Are we going to hear a little cleaner language or softer language or is this the Donald Trump?

TRUMP: Well, sometimes, I will copy other people's language. But the other day, we had 5,000 people in New Hampshire. It was amazing. And in a blizzard, we have 5,000 thousand people. More than that. And a woman got up and used a little bit of a bad word and I said don't you dare use that word and everyone said what's the word? I said here's the word, but she used it and not me. We were just having fun.

I reused her word. And I will tell you. The place stood up and they were giving a stand -- it was like a standing ovation. It's called politically correct. We're too politically correct. Now with that being said, as I get closer and closer to the goal, it's going to get different.

You know, we started off Greta, you were there, right from the beginning, 17 people. Now we are down to not very many people, probably six in the end of the day, maybe even less than that. And once you get to a certain level, it changes. I will be changing very rapidly. I'm very capable of changing to anything I want to change to.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right, billionaire -- another New York billionaire may get into the race, Mayor Bloomberg. At least we hear some sort of chatter.

What have we -- what are your thoughts of another New York billionaire getting into the race if that happens?

TRUMP: Well, I know Michael very well. He is a friend of mine. I hope he gets into the race. I think it would be good. I would love to compete against him. And I think we do very well. I would love to see Michael in the race.

VAN SUSTEREN: What have -- in looking at this, you have now become a politician because you are in politics. What's the biggest thing that has surprised you from the inside or from being a politician that you never anticipated when you were just a billionaire businessman?

TRUMP: I will tell you what really -- a little bit surprised me, but it's a pleasant surprise how smart the American public is. How much the American public cares and how they want to change the country and bring it back.

And I have never seen anything like it. It's a slugfest. I mean, like tonight, I'm leaving as soon as we are finished here. I'm going to South Carolina. We have thousands and thousands of people showing up for an event, like a rally or whatever you want to call it that I set up like two days ago. It's unbelievable.

So the love they have for this country, Greta, is unbelievable. And that's a very pleasant surprise. I assumed it, but not to the extent that I've seen. It's incredible.

VAN SUSTEREN: Donald Trump, thank you very much for joining us. I hope you will come back soon.

TRUMP: I will, thank you.