2016 in Quotes: The Presidential Campaign

by Dan Quinn

It’s that time again — our annual review of the most offensive, ridiculous and otherwise outrageous quotes we heard from the right over the past 12 months. We’ve got a real basket of deplorables to share this year. You can check out previous posts from the Year in Quotes here. Today we’ll start with what we heard from the presidential campaign trail.

“Nobody likes him.”

– Former Republican presidential nominee and Kansas senator Bob Dole, talking about Texas Senator Ted Cruz during Cruz’s presidential campaign

“It’s a lot like being shot or poisoned: I think you get the same result.”

– U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, talking about whether he would prefer Ted Cruz or Donald Trump as the GOP presidential nominee

“Sniveling coward.”

– Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, criticizing Donald Trump for insulting Cruz’s wife

“I am not in the habit of supporting people who attack my wife and who attack my father. [The pledge to support the Republican presidential nominee] was not a blanket commitment that if you go and slander and attack Heidi that I’m gonna nonetheless come like a servile puppy dog and say, ‘Thank you very much for maligning my wife and maligning my father.'”

– U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, explaining his refusal to endorse Donald Trump for president. Sen. Cruz endorsed Trump a few weeks later anyway.

“And hang in there. Be full of faith and so full of joy that this team was chosen to fight a long battle. Think that slavery — it took 25 years to defeat slavery. That is a lot longer than four years.”

– Heidi Cruz, likening husband Ted Cruz’s failed presidential campaign to ending slavery

“You had Donald Trump lie repeatedly and — heavens to Betsy — accusing the most honorable guy in the race of all kinds of dishonesty. As a Christian, Stuart, if he apologizes, then yes, I will forgive him and come on board.”

– Texas Congressman Louie Gohmert, R-Tyler, insisting in May that his endorsement of Donald Trump would depend on Trump apologizing for insulting Ted Cruz’s wife and family. Trump didn’t apologize. Just weeks later, Gohmert said he would vote for Trump anyway.

“When you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything … Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.”

– Donald Trump, in audio from a 2005 tape released during the presidential campaign

“I think we should forgive Trump because he made these comments when he was a Democrat … and he’s become a Republican and he knows you’re not supposed to talk like that anymore. So they’re horrible things and I feel sure there are other things that are going to come out. … But it was when he was a Democrat and he’s changed and he’s learned you don’t talk like that.”

– Texas Congressman Louie Gohmert, R-Tyler, mansplaining why Donald Trump should get a pass after the release of a recording in which he bragged about using his celebrity to sexually assault women.

“We have no respect for that man. [Schlafly’s endorsement] is going to be widely dismissed. At 91, it is just totally unfair to impose upon someone who has such a beautiful legacy … I think this was very much a manipulation. When you’re 91 and you’re not out with the grass roots all the time, it is very much taking advantage of someone.”

– Former Texas Eagle Forum president Cathie Adams, expressing her dismay that Eagle Forum founder and leader Phyllis Schlafly was supporting Donald Trump’s presidential campaign

“All of the men, we’re petrified to speak to women anymore. We may raise our voice. You know what? The women get it better than we do, folks. They get it better than we do.”

– Donald Trump, claiming on the presidential campaign trail that men are oppressed today

“We compete, and then we let bygones by bygones.”

-Former Texas governor and former Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry, explaining how he could support Donald Trump for president after strongly denouncing him as a “cancer on conservatism”

“Donald Trump lives a life of loving and helping others, as Jesus taught in the New Testament.”

– Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr., who strongly supported Trump during the presidential campaign

“And you quit footing the bill for these nations who are oil-rich, we’re paying for some of their squirmishes that have been going on for centuries. Where they’re fighting each other and yelling ‘Allahu akbar,’ calling jihad on each other’s heads forever and ever. Like I’ve said before, let them duke it out and let Allah sort it out.”

– Former Republican U.S. presidential nominee and Alaska governor Sarah Palin, endorsing Donald Trump for president

“Our unholy rotten soulless criminal America destroying government killed 4 Americans in Banghazi. Period! What sort of chimpass punk would deny security, turn down 61 requests for security, then tell US forces to STAND DOWN when they were ready to kickass on the allapukes & save American lives! Obama & Clinton, thats who. They should be tried for treason & hung. Our entire fkdup gvt must be cleansed asap.”

– From an unhinged Facebook rant by aging rocker Ted Nugent

“No, I think sometimes a lady needs to be told when she’s being nasty. I do.”

– Texas Congressman Brian Babin, R-Woodville, defending Donald Trump for calling Hillary Clinton a “nasty woman” during a presidential debate

“It is surreal to talk about issues here on air and then word for word hear Trump say it two days later. It is amazing.”

– Austin-based conspiracy theorist and talk show host Alex Jones

“I urge you to vote for Donald Trump because he is the one candidate who points out that we should accept immigrants who are good for America. We don’t need Muslims. We need smart, well-educated white people who will assimilate to our culture. Vote Trump.”

– Audio from a robocall received by Iowa voters from the white nationalist American National Super PAC

“Now, if Trump does win, okay, it’s going to be a real opportunity for people like white nationalists, acting intelligently to build upon that.”

– Rocky Suhayda, chairman of the American Nazi Party, voicing his hopes for the party under a Donald Trump presidency

“Hail Trump, hail our people, hail victory!”

– Former Texan Richard Spencer, a white supremacist leader, celebrating Donald Trump’s election as president. Gleeful audience members responded with “Sieg Heils” and Nazi salutes.

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