NH Voters, Experts Ponder Trump's Chances - NECN
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NH Voters, Experts Ponder Trump's Chances

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    NEWSLETTERS

    As the Republican candidate traveled to the U.S.-Mexico border, his comments about Mexican immigrants, John McCain, Lindsey Graham and others are fresh in the public's minds. (Published Thursday, July 23, 2015)

     Donald Trump arrived in Laredo, Texas, with the same fanfare that's accompanied all his Presidential campaign stops.

    Trump was originally supposed to be hosted by border patrol agents, but the agents cancelled after consulting with their national union.

    "They said, 'We can't get involved,' and I heard they go those orders from Washington," said Trump.

    The candidate stirred up the presidential race when he said most Mexicans illegally crossing the border are rapists and criminals. The Republican party tried to tone Trump down, but the billionaire businessman responded by further firing up the dialogue - saying GOP Sen. John McCain, a POW, was not a war hero.

    "I'm sure the Republican party is wishing that when Donald Trump goes to the border today, that he keeps going," said former New Hampshire Democratic State Party chair Kathy Sullivan.

    Sullivan acknowledges that Trump is at the top of the GOP polls and is driving the debate but added, "It's a little unfortunate, though, because, although we can laugh about it from the Democratic side, I'd rather have people talking about the issues."

    Trump has also hinted that if he doesn't win the Republican nomination, he might run as a third party candidate, much like Ross Perot did in 1992.

    "That, if nothing else, will make Republicans the most uncomfortable because they remember what Ross Perot did to George Bush's chances for re-election," said New Hampshire political consultant Scott Spradling.

    Spradling says some state republicans are obviously attracted to Trump's anti establishment outspokenness.

    "Everybody else is in a mild state of panic," he said. "They're watching what's going on and wishing that he would pull the reins back a little bit."

    Trump shows no signs of pulling back.

    "The best way to win is for me to get the nomination and to run probably against Hillary," he said. "Hillary is the worst - look, easily - she's the worst secretary of state in the history of our country. She is going to be beaten and I'm the one to beat her."

    One area in which Trump did seem to pull back a bit - when asked about that third party bid today, he says his plan is to run as a Republican and to win the nomination.

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