This presidential election campaign was tumultuous from the very beginning, and it only got nuttier after the primaries.
Even if you feel like you’ve been seeing Trump (or Trumps) everywhere you look, the GOP candidate certainly hasn’t been the sole source of outlandish moments.
Many candidates, advisors, media personalities and bystanders ended up playing a role in making this a campaign that can only be described as stranger than fiction.
Credit: SNL Tweet
20. Trump attacks Megyn Kelly's "whatever"
Trump didn’t like a tough question Fox News host Megyn Kelly asked him during the first GOP debate, and he let the world know it.
“Wow, @megynkelly really bombed tonight,” he wrote on Twitter, before telling an interviewer that Kelly had “blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever.”
The two eventually made amends.
Credit: Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images
19. Ben Carson claims stab-happy past
In his book “Gifted Hands,” former Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson claimed that as a teen, he once tried to stab a friend, but the knife snapped when it hit the friend’s belt buckle.
Several of Carson’s childhood friends said he never displayed violent tendencies. Carson then changed his story to say it involved a “close relative.”
18. Ted Cruz cooks up "machine-gun bacon"
In a video produced for the Ted Cruz campaign, the then-candidate wrapped a “machine gun” with bacon, fired several rounds and then ate the bacon off the weapon.
“Mmm, machine-gun bacon,” Cruz declared in the ad. Some pointed out that the gun Cruz used was not actually a machine gun, but rather an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle.
Credit: Independent Journal Review video produced during Ted Cruz campaign
17. Clinton tends bar on "SNL"
Presidential candidates often appear on “Saturday Night Live” as themselves, but Hillary Clinton took it to a new level during her appearance in the 2015/2016 season opener.
Clinton played a bartender named “Val,” who listened as “Hillary Clinton,” played by cast member Kate McKinnon, vented about the campaign trail.
Credit: NBC/Broadway Video
16. Chris Christie endorses Trump
About two weeks after dropping out of the primary race, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie endorsed Donald Trump.
The announcement shocked many in the political world; GOP politico Christie and Trump had been trading barbs for weeks.
When the governor joined Trump on the campaign trail, many onlookers suggested he looked dismayed.
15. Sanders "sick" of Clinton’s emails
“The American people are sick and tired of hearing about your damn emails,” Bernie Sanders told Hillary Clinton during a Democratic debate in October 2015.
“Me too,” Clinton responded. But that hardly put the issue to rest.
Clinton’s use of a private server during her time as secretary of state dogged her throughout the 2016 campaign.
Credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images
14. Deez Nuts runs for president
Brady Olson, a 15-year-old from an Iowa, was revealed to be behind the satirical presidential candidate Deez Nuts.
The campaign might have been fake, but the statement of candidacy was real, and Deez Nuts even polled at 9 percent in a 2015 survey by Public Policy Polling.
Credit: Deez Nuts online campaign store
13. Trump lurks behind Clinton
Social media erupted with questions about Donald Trump’s pacing and standing behind Clinton during the second presidential debate.
Trump “was really trying to dominate and then literally stalk me around the stage,” Clinton said afterwards.
12. A "basket of deplorables"
Clinton faced backlash after telling a crowd at a fundraiser that half of Trump’s supporters could be grouped into a “basket of deplorables.”
“I was grossly generalistic, and that’s never a good idea,” Clinton later said in an apology statement. “I regret saying ‘half’ – that was wrong.”
Credit: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images
11. DNC chair resigns
On the eve of the Democratic National Convention, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz resigned as DNC chairwoman following an email leak that revealed the committee secretly tried to undermine Bernie Sanders’ campaign in favor of Hillary Clinton.
Credit: Scott Audette/Reuters
10. Warrant issued for Jill Stein's arrest
A warrant was issued for the arrest of Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein after she spray-painted construction equipment during a protest against the Dakota Access oil pipeline.
Stein was charged with misdemeanor counts of criminal trespass and criminal mischief, and responded by tweeting: “The Dakota Access Pipeline is vandalism on steroids.”
Credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images
9. Trump claims election is rigged
Trump repeatedly claimed the election was “rigged” to favor Clinton.
President Barack Obama said Trump’s claims were “based on no facts,” but at the final presidential debate, Trump doubled down on his complaints, refusing to pledge he would accept the election results if he loses.
Credit: Jonathan Ernst/Reuters
8. Trump aide charged with battery
Donald Trump’s campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, was charged with misdemeanor battery for allegedly grabbing reporter Michelle Fields as she tried to question Trump after a March press conference. The charge was later dropped.
Lewandowski was fired by the Trump campaign in June but still makes appearances as a Trump surrogate.
7. Melania Trump accused of plagiarism
Melania Trump fielded blistering criticism after a chunk of her GOP convention speech was strikingly similar to part of Michelle Obama’s DNC speech from 2008.
Credit: Alex Wong/Paul J. Richards/AFP/Getty Images
6. Gary Johnson: What is Aleppo?
When asked during an MSNBC interview how he would handle the ongoing crisis in the besieged Syrian city of Aleppo, Gary Johnson, the Libertarian presidential nominee, asked: “What is Aleppo?” He later said he “blanked” on the topic.
The 1996 Miss Universe, Alicia Machado, came forward to say she was publicly humiliated by Trump when she gained weight after winning the pageant. Machado said Trump called her “Miss Piggy,” among other insults.
Trump responded with a pre-dawn Twitter salvo urging the public to “check out” Machado’s “sex tape and past” (no sex tape ever emerged).
Credit: Jon Levy/AFP/Getty Images
4. Clinton whisked from 9/11 memorial
After Clinton abruptly left the Sept. 11 commemoration ceremony early, her campaign said she was feeling “overheated.”
But video later emerged of Clinton faltering as she made her exit, and the uproar prompted her campaign to disclose that the candidate had actually been diagnosed with pneumonia.
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3. Trump's lewd comments exposed
During a 2005 conversation with TV host Billy Bush, then of “Access Hollywood,” Trump was caught on a hot microphone bragging in explicit language about groping women.
“I never said I’m a perfect person,” Trump said in a semi-apologetic video released amid heavy bipartisan criticism.
For his role in the debacle, Bush – the nephew of former President George H.W. Bush – was fired from NBC’s “Today” show.
After Trump denied ever groping women, 10 women came forward to say he’d done just that to them. Trump called their claims “totally and absolutely false.”
Credit: Access Hollywood/Washington Post
2. Melania Trump dons "pussy bow"
In the wake of the video, in which Trump bragged about grabbing women “by the p****,” his wife made an interesting outfit choice for the second presidential debate.
Fashion-minded debate watchers pointed out that her Gucci blouse was a style called a pussy-bow, or pussycat bow, shirt.
Credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images
1. Candidates obsess over anatomy
After Marco Rubio made a crack at a rally about Trump having “small hands” (“You know what they say about men with small hands? You can’t trust them,” he said) Trump raised it at the debate.
“Are they small hands?” he mused. He added that Rubio was trying to suggest “something else must be small.”
“I guarantee you there’s no problem,” Trump declared.