Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump said Thursday afternoon he wanted to "hit" some of the Democratic National Convention speakers "so hard" while watching them last night, including a "little guy...so hard his head would spin."
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"You know what I wanted to. I wanted to hit a couple of those speakers so hard," Trump said. "I would have hit them. No, no. I was going to hit them, I was all set and then I got a call from a highly respected governor."
Trump didn't immediately clarify what he meant, but he said he was made particularly upset by an unspecified person he called a "little guy."
"I was gonna hit one guy in particular, a very little guy," he said. "I was gonna hit this guy so hard his head would spin and he wouldn't know what the hell happened."
Trump has been campaigning vigorously during the week of the DNC, and has been trying to grab media attention in the process. Yesterday, he held events in Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and hosted a short Ask Me Anything (AMA) session on Reddit in which he spoke to his most ardent supporters.
At the Florida event, he appeared to invite Russia to intervene in U.S. elections by asking the country to retrieve thousands of Hillary Clinton's deleted emails.
"By the way, if they hacked, they probably have her 33,000 emails. I hope they do," Trump told reporters Wednesday morning during a press conference at his golf club in Doral, Florida. "They probably have her 33,000 emails that she lost and deleted."
His campaign immediately tried to walk back his remarks.
3/7 To be clear, Mr. Trump did not call on, or invite, Russia or anyone else to hack Hillary Clinton’s e-mails today.— Jason Miller (@JasonMillerinDC) July 27, 2016
4/7 Trump was clearly saying that if Russia or others have Clinton’s 33,000 illegally deleted emails, they should share them w/ FBI immed.— Jason Miller (@JasonMillerinDC) July 27, 2016
Today, he wrote off what he said as sarcasm on Fox News.
"Of course I was being sarcastic," the Republican presidential nominee said on "Fox & Friends" this morning.
Before he made the comment about his desire to hit the DNC speakers, Trump accused Sen. Bernie Sanders of "selling out to the devil."
"I was going to say it before. What Bernie should have done instead of selling out to the devil which is what he did, Bernie should have quietly let everything happen, have his protest. He’ll lose, have his protest, go home. He would have gone home a hero," Trump said. "Really, now he's on the other side of the equation except for one thing, trade. He's the only one that gets it."
Trump repeated the sentiment at a rally hosted in Cedar Rapids several hours later, and expressed his desire to "hit this [little] guy so bad."
He said that he was urged to think of his fight against "Crooked Hillary" instead, and that he was advised "don't punch down."
The trip to Iowa was his first return to the state since losing it during the Iowa caucus which took place in February.