On the first campaign stop since announcing his tax plan, GOP front-runner Donald Trump came out swinging Wednesday night to a crowd of over 3,500 in Keene, N.H.
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Changing his tune on Syrian refugees, after once saying he would grant them asylum because "humanitarian basis, you have to”, Trump now says he would kick them out. "I'm putting the people on notice that are coming here from Syria as part of this mass migration, that if I win, if I win, they're going back."
Trump also took direct aim at rivals Sen. Marco Rubio and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. "Then there's Rubio, who's running against Bush, and he probably shouldn't be from a loyalty standpoint; the veterans know what I mean about loyalty, right?” Trump asked the crowd.
"So they ask Rubio, ‘What do you think of Bush?’ 'He's my dear friend. Wonderful, just wonderful.' They hate each other. They hate. Trust me, I know. They hate so much. They hate more than anybody in this room hates their neighbor. But it's political bull****, do you understand? It's true," a fiery Trump said.
Bush, at his own town hall across the state in Bedford, N.H., scoffed at Trump's assertion that his and Rubio's relationship wasn't real.
"We’re friends, and I can take criticism. He [Rubio] can as well. Donald seems to have a harder time taking criticism and he probably needs to put on his big boy pants," Bush said, adding "Donald Trump has no knowledge about my relationship with Marco Rubio."
And, speaking to a crowd of about 200, there was a striking scene. A young Syrian-American woman named Nora stood up, in tears, and told of her 14 family members whom she had been supporting in Syria, whose houses had been bombed. They had just made it to Turkey and she asked Bush, voice cracking and filled with emotion, “Are we going to let Putin run this world?”
Bush applauded her strength and encouraged the crowd to do so as well. Then, he put himself in clear opposition to Trump, saying the United States has to take a role in providing support.
"Send them all back to a hell hole?” he said to reporters afterwards. "That’s not the proper policy for the United States and it’s certainly not an exhibition of leadership. …There should be some sensitivity to this by Mr. Trump."
Back in Keene, Trump ran threw his tax plan, his first time including it in a campaign speech since announcing it Monday morning.
Weather depending, the New York real estate mogul will campaign in Virginia and Tennessee this weekend.