N.H. senator ‘misspoke’ after calling Donald Trump a role model
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Tuesday, October 4, 2016, 1:26 AM
U.S. Sen. Kelly Ayotte took back a flippant remark suggesting she would “absolutely” point to Donald Trump as a role model for children during a New Hampshire debate Monday.
The tongue-tied junior legislator struggled to respond when asked if she would tell children “to be like Donald Trump,” whose White House bid has been dogged by financial follies and habitually childish, racist and sexist behavior.
“I think that certainly there are many role models that we have,” said the first-term GOP senator. “I believe (Trump) can serve as president, and so absolutely I would do that.”
With that said, the debate moderator at New England College in Henniker challenged Ayotte’s response and asked why she has not endorsed the Republican nominee.
The former state attorney general cited unspecified “disagreements” with the real estate mogul from New York.
Sen. Kelly Ayotte described Donald Trump as a role model for children during a New Hampshire senate debate.
“I’ve been quite clear about those disagreements,” Ayotte added.
Ayotte later said she “misspoke.”
“While I would hope all of our children would aspire to be president, neither Donald Trump nor Hillary Clinton have set a good example and I wouldn’t hold up either of them as role models for my kids,” she said in a statement hours after the debate.
Ayotte’s trouble with Trump dates back to August.
Donald trump initially refused to endorse Sen. Kelly Ayotte because she wouldn’t support him.
(Darren Hauck/Getty Images)
Ayotte, a fiscal conservative, pledged to vote for the Republican ticket during the November election but she refused to endorse Trump in a desperate attempt to distance herself from the presidential hopeful’s unhinged antics — especially after he disparaged the parents of U.S. Army Capt. Humayun Khan.
Trump took offense to Ayotte’s slight and initially refused to endorse Ayotte, saying she offered him “zero support” in New Hampshire, where he beat Ohio Gov. John Kasich by a landslide in February.
He later defused his feud and endorsed her campaign, calling the 48-year-old legislator a “rising star” for the Republican party, according to Politico.
Hassan, her Democratic rival, rushed to say Ayotte’s remark broke the Internet — borrowing a term famously used by Paper Magazine to describe reality TV star Kim Kardashian’s nude photoshoot.
“Ayotte has tried to have it both ways all cycle with her tortured ‘support but not endorse’ position,” Hassan wrote in a statement. “Tonight she fully embraced the worst of Trump.”