Businessman and reality show host Donald Trump’s 2016 Republican presidential bid stirred strong emotions among District residents who, two weeks after his announcement, found a Trump White House unlikely.
“I think it’s stupid,” said American University student Emily Smith, 19. “I honestly just think he’s running for the publicity of it.”
Trump, 69, announced his intent June 16 to run for the Republican presidential nomination during a press conference at Trump Tower in midtown Manhattan. The 45-minute speech, featuring Trump making provocative statements on immigration policy, has been watched nearly a million times on YouTube.
“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best,” Trump said in the press conference. “They’re sending people that have lots of problems and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists.”
Since his controversial campaign announcement, both NBC and Macy’s have cut ties with Trump in the respects of his television show, The Apprentice, and clothing line, Donald J Trump Collections.
Many interviewed this week in Washington D.C.’s Tenleytown neighborhood and on the campus of American University said Trump’s launch remarks were troubling but also noted his lack of a clear policy plan worried them, too.
Dan Bell, 21, found Trump’s candidacy comical.
“I think it’s hilarious,” Bell said. “It makes my day.”
Dan Bell’s sister, Amelia Bell, 24, added that America under Trump would be “like the Hunger Games,” referring to the popular dystopian fiction trilogy written by Suzanne Collins.
Both of the siblings expressed interest in voting for Hillary Clinton in 2016.
Rachel Nadelman, 38, took a break from an afternoon jog to answer questions about Trump’s candidacy.
“I don’t think in the end that anybody would really vote for him because he doesn’t have any substantial policy plans,” Nadelman said. “While he can speak in racist language because he’s not trying to get donors, overall he’s not going to get much of a following.”