Donald Trump loves to take credit for big television ratings, considering himself the ratings magnet of-- and raising big bucks after the first general election face-off, CBS News’ Major Garrett reports.
On Tuesday, Trump brought that television production flair to a rally in central Florida where campaign television cameras even shot a future commercial, with Trump’s private jet gliding slowly up to a jam packed hangar in Melbourne, Florida amid pseudo-presidential fanfare.
“We are going to win Florida so big,” Trump told the crowd.
Trump, who can’t abide losing, cited non-scientific online polls as proof that he.
“Almost every single poll had us winning the debate against crooked Hillary Clinton, big league, big league,” he said.
And he patted himself on the back for something else: restraint.
“I was also holding back, I didn’t want to do anything to embarrass her,” Trump said.
Casting Clinton as a captive of old-style politics, the GOP nominee reprised what advisers thought was his best debate-night attack.
“What has Hillary Clinton accomplished for your family in the last 26 years that she has been doing this?” he asked. “Nothing, nothing.”
At the debate, he had slammed her as having “got experience -- but it’s bad experience.”
And having failed to drive home the email issue when face-to-face with Clinton, Trump said Tuesday that her email scandal continued to look worse and worse.
“Her aides took the Fifth Amendment and her ring leaders were given immunity, and if you’re not guilty of a crime what do you need immunity for?” he said.
Still, Trump found fault with the debate -- specifically moderator Lester Holt and a supposedly defective microphone.
“Well, he didn’t ask her about the emails at all. He didn’t ask her about her scandals,” Trump complained on Fox News Tuesday.
“My microphone was terrible. I wonder was it set up that way on purpose,” he added. “I don’t want to believe in conspiracy theories, of course, but it was much lower than hers.”
Clinton, for her part, dismissed the conspiracy.
“Anyone who complains about the microphones is not having a good night,” she said.
Trump brought his biggest fundraisers to Trump Tower Tuesday and raised $18 million. Online donations augmented that total as well.
Still, Trump remains far short of the $140 million he has promised to spend on advertising, and he’s under mounting pressure to spend more of his own money to fund his cause.