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Donald Trump says #CNNDebate was unfair to other candidates

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As a nod to his new “Humble” nickname, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump on Thursday said the previous night’s candidate debate was “a little bit unfair to a lot of other people, frankly.”

“I thought I was on too much,” Trump said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” program. “I felt badly for everybody else. Every question had to do with me … I mean, everything was about Trump ….

“And then they go into this debate and there was split screens all over the place,” he added. “I’ve never seen anything like it … But from my standpoint, I was treated fairly.

Trump got laughs when CNN debate moderator Jake Tapper asked the candidates what their Secret Service codenames would be if they could select them.

Trump said, “Humble.”

He also repeated remarks made directly after the three-hour debate that “nobody did poorly,” naming Carly Fiorina and Jeb Bush as coming off particularly well.

The real estate tycoon-turned-reality TV star did have one complaint: “Three hours is too much for a debate,” he said.

“It’s a long time to be debating but I think it’s even worse for people that have to sit,” Trump said. “If this were a two-hour debate, it would’ve been a great debate. Three hours is really unacceptable.

“What happened is about a week ago, we got a call that they were going to make the debate almost an hour more. And you know what that is, that means the advertising is so dense and so deep and they’re getting tremendous numbers per minute and for half minute that they just added another 45 minutes to an hour to the debate.”

Trump had asked CNN to give away the money made from selling commercials on the debate to a charity that benefits veterans.

As Time magazine reported:

The presidential hopeful wrote a letter to CNN President Jeff Zucker in which he noted that ad rates for the GOP debate were being sold at a nearly 4,000% increase (from $5,000 to $200,000) and said that the “tremendous increase in viewer interest and advertising is due 100% to ‘Donald J. Trump.’”

Trump also said of the debate that “Vince McMahon would’ve loved it, because that was a WWE kind of a thing,” referring to World Wrestling Entertainment and its longtime chief executive.

“But I was involved with virtually every question,” Trump said. “So it was really a little bit wild. Actually a couple of (candidates) came up and said, ‘you know what Donald—can I hit you so that I can get a little bit more time?’ because some of these guys … I felt badly—a lot of them are friends of mine and they got no air time last night.”

Here’s the link to the video: http://on.msnbc.com/1NziOPH

Before joining Florida Politics, journalist and attorney James Rosica was state government reporter for The Tampa Tribune. He attended journalism school in Washington, D.C., working at dailies and weekly papers in Philadelphia after graduation. Rosica joined the Tallahassee Democrat in 1997, later moving to the courts beat, where he reported on the 2000 presidential recount. In 2005, Rosica left journalism to attend law school in Philadelphia, afterwards working part time for a public-interest law firm. Returning to writing, he covered three legislative sessions in Tallahassee for The Associated Press, before joining the Tribune’s re-opened Tallahassee bureau in 2013. He can be reached at jim@floridapolitics.com.

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