Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump is “the most interesting character out there,” former President Bill Clinton said Tuesday night in an appearance on The Late Show.
Clinton was asked by host Stephen Colbert to explain why Trump has been so successful.
“Because he’s a master brander,” Clinton responded. “And he’s the most interesting character out there.”
Clinton noted the difference between Trump and most of the other candidates seeking the Republican presidential nomination.
“He says something that overrides the ideological differences,” Clinton said. “If you look at the first debate, a lot of those guys were competing for who could be the most politically correct on the answers. Trump says, ‘OK, I’ve supported Democrats; I’ve supported Republicans. Yeah, I used to be friends with Bill Clinton – who cares?’”
Clinton gave his version of Trump’s basic message.
“‘I run things, and I build things. And you need somebody who’ll go in there and fix it,’” said Clinton, paraphrasing Trump. “‘And if they don’t let me fix it, I’ll just get them out of the way.’”
“There is a macho appeal to saying ‘I’m just sick of nothing happening. I make things happen. Vote for me,’” Clinton said.
Clinton also denied that he urged Trump to run for the White House.
“No. I get credit for doing a lot of things I didn’t do like that,” he said. “His daughter told my daughter that he had tried to call me, and I didn’t get the message. So I simply called him back. And I don’t know whether he’d ever intended to discuss this with me or not…I think by the time I got him back, he’d forgotten why he called me in the first place…Had a very pleasant conversation with him, and it wasn’t about running for office. So I missed the chance.”