TIME 2016 presidential election

Republican Presidential Hopefuls Got Bailed Out on the Confederate Flag

Nikki Haley's call to remove the flag from the South Carolina statehouse takes the issue off the table for the 2016 election

South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley yesterday called for her state’s legislature to finally remove the Confederate flag from Capitol grounds. In my mind, this was as close to a gimme as they come. The only problem with Haley’s call is that it gives presidential candidates an easy out from answering tough questions they’ve been flubbing for the last five days.

Prior to Haley’s announcement, Jeb Bush claimed that the Confederate flag issue was best left to the leaders of South Carolina to figure out. Ted Cruz said that the last thing South Carolina needed was “people from outside the state coming in and dictating how they should resolve it.” Marco Rubio wanted the state to “make the right choice for the people of South Carolina.” And so on and so on. They were buying themselves time in the hope that local politicians would bail them out. Mission accomplished.

The fact that these candidates were equivocating on this issue at all speaks to politics over leadership, particularly on an issue as damaging as the Confederate flag flying on top of government buildings in 2015. I understand why they were trying so hard not to say anything substantive—a 2014 Winthrop University poll found that 61 percent of South Carolina residents believed the confederate flag should still fly on state house grounds. 73 percent of whites polled said it should stay, and a downright shocking 27 percent of black respondents agree.

But this is a level of nuance that the American people, and the residents of South Carolina, are allowed to have. Candidates running for president don’t get the same latitude. And with Haley’s announcement, they were given an easy out. They should have long ago ignored what the polls were saying and told us directly whether they believed the flag should continue to fly and why. Now they’ll never have to, claiming they were vindicated in allowing the state of South Carolina to make the “right” decision for themselves. These candidates should have acknowledged outright that the Confederate flag is a clear symbol of racism and hatred, the same type of racism that claimed the lives of those 9 people in the church.

Bremmer is a foreign affairs columnist and editor-at-large at TIME. He is the president of Eurasia Group, a political-risk consultancy, and a Global Research Professor at New York University. His most recent book is Superpower: Three Choices for America’s Role in the World

TIME celebrity

See What Cher Had to Say About Donald Trump’s Run for Presidency

Cher performs at the 'Late Show with David Letterman' on Sept. 24, 2013.
Jeffrey R. Staab—CBS via Getty Images Cher performs at the 'Late Show with David Letterman' on Sept. 24, 2013.

Ouch

This week, Donald Trump announced he will be among the candidates running for President of the United States in 2016. The news was met with much derision from late-night hosts like Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, but the biggest vitriol of all came from Cher.

“Donald Trump’s ego is so inflated, he might as well be the Hindenburg,” Cher wrote on Twitter. “In Dictionary next to ‘obnoxious a–hole,’ see photo of ‘THE DONALD.’”

When a fan asked Cher which of the 50 states Trump could carry in a general election, the 69-year-old singer replied, “the state of desperation.” In a subsequent tweet, Cher offered Trump some advice.

“Go 2 a Mirror, & Stand & Reflect… Not The Usual ‘Mirror mirror on the wall’ … Who’s The SMARTEST Media Whore Of Them All,” she wrote.

When asked to choose between Trump and fellow Republican Ted Cruz, Cher wrote “that’s like saying ‘would you rather have a Migraine or Throw Up.’”

This article originally appeared on EW.com

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TIME 2016 Election

Donald Trump’s Presidential Announcement Sparks Huge Facebook Reaction

He leads the Republican presidential candidates on the number of Facebook "interactions" with 6.4 million

Donald Trump may be more smoke than fire, but there certainly is a lot of smoke.

In the 24-hour period leading up to and following Trump’s announcement that he is running for president, 3.4 million American Facebook users generated 6.4 million interactions on the social network related to the real estate mogul, according to the company.

Interactions include likes, posts, comments and shares. The data was collected only for U.S. users 18 and older.

West Virginia topped the list of states chattering about Trump, followed by Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Alabama and New York.

Trump is the most buzzed-about Republican candidate on Facebook so far. Sen. Ted Cruz generated 5.5 million interactions in the 24-hour period surrounding his announcement, while Jeb Bush garnered only 849,000 interactions, the company said.

Hillary Clinton leads the list of candidates across parties, with 4.7 million people generating 10.1 million interactions on Facebook surrounding her announcement. Clinton is far and away the leader among Democratic candidates, followed by Sen. Bernie Sanders with 1.2 million interactions.

TIME politics

Here’s Donald Trump’s Presidential Announcement Speech

The reality television host said he is running for President. Here are his remarks from a speech given Tuesday at Trump Tower in New York City

Wow. Whoa. That is some group of people. Thousands.

So nice, thank you very much. That’s really nice. Thank you. It’s great to be at Trump Tower. It’s great to be in a wonderful city, New York. And it’s an honor to have everybody here. This is beyond anybody’s expectations. There’s been no crowd like this.

And, I can tell, some of the candidates, they went in. They didn’t know the air-conditioner didn’t work. They sweated like dogs.

They didn’t know the room was too big, because they didn’t have anybody there. How are they going to beat ISIS? I don’t think it’s gonna happen.

Our country is in serious trouble. We don’t have victories anymore. We used to have victories, but we don’t have them. When was the last time anybody saw us beating, let’s say, China in a trade deal? They kill us. I beat China all the time. All the time.

When did we beat Japan at anything? They send their cars over by the millions, and what do we do? When was the last time you saw a Chevrolet in Tokyo? It doesn’t exist, folks. They beat us all the time.

When do we beat Mexico at the border? They’re laughing at us, at our stupidity. And now they are beating us economically. They are not our friend, believe me. But they’re killing us economically.

The U.S. has become a dumping ground for everybody else’s problems.

Thank you. It’s true, and these are the best and the finest. When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.

But I speak to border guards and they tell us what we’re getting. And it only makes common sense. It only makes common sense. They’re sending us not the right people.

It’s coming from more than Mexico. It’s coming from all over South and Latin America, and it’s coming probably— probably— from the Middle East. But we don’t know. Because we have no protection and we have no competence, we don’t know what’s happening. And it’s got to stop and it’s got to stop fast.

Islamic terrorism is eating up large portions of the Middle East. They’ve become rich. I’m in competition with them.

They just built a hotel in Syria. Can you believe this? They built a hotel. When I have to build a hotel, I pay interest. They don’t have to pay interest, because they took the oil that, when we left Iraq, I said we should’ve taken.

So now ISIS has the oil, and what they don’t have, Iran has. And in 19— and I will tell you this, and I said it very strongly, years ago, I said— and I love the military, and I want to have the strongest military that we’ve ever had, and we need it more now than ever. But I said, “Don’t hit Iraq,” because you’re going to totally destabilize the Middle East. Iran is going to take over the Middle East, Iran and somebody else will get the oil, and it turned out that Iran is now taking over Iraq. Think of it. Iran is taking over Iraq, and they’re taking it over big league.

We spent $2 trillion in Iraq, $2 trillion. We lost thousands of lives, thousands in Iraq. We have wounded soldiers, who I love, I love — they’re great — all over the place, thousands and thousands of wounded soldiers.

And we have nothing. We can’t even go there. We have nothing. And every time we give Iraq equipment, the first time a bullet goes off in the air, they leave it.

Last week, I read 2,300 Humvees— these are big vehicles— were left behind for the enemy. 2,000? You would say maybe two, maybe four? 2,300 sophisticated vehicles, they ran, and the enemy took them.

Last quarter, it was just announced our gross domestic product— a sign of strength, right? But not for us. It was below zero. Whoever heard of this? It’s never below zero.

Our labor participation rate was the worst since 1978. But think of it, GDP below zero, horrible labor participation rate.

And our real unemployment is anywhere from 18 to 20 percent. Don’t believe the 5.6. Don’t believe it.

That’s right. A lot of people up there can’t get jobs. They can’t get jobs, because there are no jobs, because China has our jobs and Mexico has our jobs. They all have jobs.

But the real number, the real number is anywhere from 18 to 19 and maybe even 21 percent, and nobody talks about it, because it’s a statistic that’s full of nonsense.

Our enemies are getting stronger and stronger by the way, and we as a country are getting weaker. Even our nuclear arsenal doesn’t work.

It came out recently they have equipment that is 30 years old. They don’t know if it worked. And I thought it was horrible when it was broadcast on television, because boy, does that send signals to Putin and all of the other people that look at us and they say, “That is a group of people, and that is a nation that truly has no clue. They don’t know what they’re doing. They don’t know what they’re doing.”

We have a disaster called the big lie: Obamacare. Obamacare.

Yesterday, it came out that costs are going for people up 29, 39, 49, and even 55 percent, and deductibles are through the roof. You have to be hit by a tractor, literally, a tractor, to use it, because the deductibles are so high, it’s virtually useless. It’s virtually useless. It is a disaster.

And remember the $5 billion website? $5 billion we spent on a website, and to this day it doesn’t work. A $5 billion website.

I have so many websites, I have them all over the place. I hire people, they do a website. It costs me $3. $5 billion website.

Well, you need somebody, because politicians are all talk, no action. Nothing’s gonna get done. They will not bring us— believe me— to the promised land. They will not.

As an example, I’ve been on the circuit making speeches, and I hear my fellow Republicans. And they’re wonderful people. I like them. They all want me to support them. They don’t know how to bring it about. They come up to my office. I’m meeting with three of them in the next week. And they don’t know— “Are you running? Are you not running? Could we have your support? What do we do? How do we do it?”

I like them. And I hear their speeches. And they don’t talk jobs and they don’t talk China. When was the last time you heard China is killing us? They’re devaluing their currency to a level that you wouldn’t believe. It makes it impossible for our companies to compete, impossible. They’re killing us.

But you don’t hear that from anybody else. You don’t hear it from anybody else. And I watch the speeches.

I watch the speeches of these people, and they say the sun will rise, the moon will set, all sorts of wonderful things will happen. And people are saying, “What’s going on? I just want a job. Just get me a job. I don’t need the rhetoric. I want a job.”

And that’s what’s happening. And it’s going to get worse, because remember, Obamacare really kicks in in ’16, 2016. Obama is going to be out playing golf. He might be on one of my courses. I would invite him, I actually would say. I have the best courses in the world, so I’d say, you what, if he wants to— I have one right next to the White House, right on the Potomac. If he’d like to play, that’s fine.

In fact, I’d love him to leave early and play, that would be a very good thing.

But Obamacare kicks in in 2016. Really big league. It is going to be amazingly destructive. Doctors are quitting. I have a friend who’s a doctor, and he said to me the other day, “Donald, I never saw anything like it. I have more accountants than I have nurses. It’s a disaster. My patients are beside themselves. They had a plan that was good. They have no plan now.”

We have to repeal Obamacare, and it can be— and— and it can be replaced with something much better for everybody. Let it be for everybody. But much better and much less expensive for people and for the government. And we can do it.

So I’ve watched the politicians. I’ve dealt with them all my life. If you can’t make a good deal with a politician, then there’s something wrong with you. You’re certainly not very good. And that’s what we have representing us. They will never make America great again. They don’t even have a chance. They’re controlled fully— they’re controlled fully by the lobbyists, by the donors, and by the special interests, fully.

Yes, they control them. Hey, I have lobbyists. I have to tell you. I have lobbyists that can produce anything for me. They’re great. But you know what? it won’t happen. It won’t happen. Because we have to stop doing things for some people, but for this country, it’s destroying our country. We have to stop, and it has to stop now.

Now, our country needs— our country needs a truly great leader, and we need a truly great leader now. We need a leader that wrote “The Art of the Deal.”

We need a leader that can bring back our jobs, can bring back our manufacturing, can bring back our military, can take care of our vets. Our vets have been abandoned.

And we also need a cheerleader.

You know, when President Obama was elected, I said, “Well, the one thing, I think he’ll do well. I think he’ll be a great cheerleader for the country. I think he’d be a great spirit.”

He was vibrant. He was young. I really thought that he would be a great cheerleader.

He’s not a leader. That’s true. You’re right about that.

But he wasn’t a cheerleader. He’s actually a negative force. He’s been a negative force. He wasn’t a cheerleader; he was the opposite.

We need somebody that can take the brand of the United States and make it great again. It’s not great again.

We need— we need somebody— we need somebody that literally will take this country and make it great again. We can do that.

And, I will tell you, I love my life. I have a wonderful family. They’re saying, “Dad, you’re going to do something that’s going to be so tough.”

You know, all of my life, I’ve heard that a truly successful person, a really, really successful person and even modestly successful cannot run for public office. Just can’t happen. And yet that’s the kind of mindset that you need to make this country great again.

So ladies and gentlemen…I am officially running… for president of the United States, and we are going to make our country great again.

It can happen. Our country has tremendous potential. We have tremendous people.

We have people that aren’t working. We have people that have no incentive to work. But they’re going to have incentive to work, because the greatest social program is a job. And they’ll be proud, and they’ll love it, and they’ll make much more than they would’ve ever made, and they’ll be— they’ll be doing so well, and we’re going to be thriving as a country, thriving. It can happen.

I will be the greatest jobs president that God ever created. I tell you that.

I’ll bring back our jobs from China, from Mexico, from Japan, from so many places. I’ll bring back our jobs, and I’ll bring back our money.

Right now, think of this: We owe China $1.3 trillion. We owe Japan more than that. So they come in, they take our jobs, they take our money, and then they loan us back the money, and we pay them in interest, and then the dollar goes up so their deal’s even better.

How stupid are our leaders? How stupid are these politicians to allow this to happen? How stupid are they?

I’m going to tell you— thank you. I’m going to tell you a couple of stories about trade, because I’m totally against the trade bill for a number of reasons.

Number one, the people negotiating don’t have a clue. Our president doesn’t have a clue. He’s a bad negotiator.

He’s the one that did Bergdahl. We get Bergdahl, they get five killer terrorists that everybody wanted over there.

We get Bergdahl. We get a traitor. We get a no-good traitor, and they get the five people that they wanted for years, and those people are now back on the battlefield trying to kill us. That’s the negotiator we have.

Take a look at the deal he’s making with Iran. He makes that deal, Israel maybe won’t exist very long. It’s a disaster, and we have to protect Israel. But…

So we need people— I’m a free trader. But the problem with free trade is you need really talented people to negotiate for you. If you don’t have talented people, if you don’t have great leadership, if you don’t have people that know business, not just a political hack that got the job because he made a contribution to a campaign, which is the way all jobs, just about, are gotten, free trade terrible.

Free trade can be wonderful if you have smart people, but we have people that are stupid. We have people that aren’t smart. And we have people that are controlled by special interests. And it’s just not going to work.

So, here’s a couple of stories happened recently. A friend of mine is a great manufacturer. And, you know, China comes over and they dump all their stuff, and I buy it. I buy it, because, frankly, I have an obligation to buy it, because they devalue their currency so brilliantly, they just did it recently, and nobody thought they could do it again.

But with all our problems with Russia, with all our problems with everything— everything, they got away with it again. And it’s impossible for our people here to compete.

So I want to tell you this story. A friend of mine who’s a great manufacturer, calls me up a few weeks ago. He’s very upset. I said, “What’s your problem?”

He said, “You know, I make great product.”

And I said, “I know. I know that because I buy the product.”

He said, “I can’t get it into China. They won’t accept it. I sent a boat over and they actually sent it back. They talked about environmental, they talked about all sorts of crap that had nothing to do with it.”

I said, “Oh, wait a minute, that’s terrible. Does anyone know this?”

He said, “Yeah, they do it all the time with other people.”

I said, “They send it back?”

“Yeah. So I finally got it over there and they charged me a big tariff. They’re not supposed to be doing that. I told them.”

Now, they do charge you tariff on trucks, when we send trucks and other things over there.

Ask Boeing. They wanted Boeing’s secrets. They wanted their patents and all their secrets before they agreed to buy planes from Boeing.

Hey, I’m not saying they’re stupid. I like China. I sell apartments for— I just sold an apartment for $15 million to somebody from China. Am I supposed to dislike them? I own a big chunk of the Bank of America Building at 1290 Avenue of the Americas, that I got from China in a war. Very valuable.

I love China. The biggest bank in the world is from China. You know where their United States headquarters is located? In this building, in Trump Tower. I love China. People say, “Oh, you don’t like China?”

No, I love them. But their leaders are much smarter than our leaders, and we can’t sustain ourself with that. There’s too much— it’s like— it’s like take the New England Patriots and Tom Brady and have them play your high school football team. That’s the difference between China’s leaders and our leaders.

They are ripping us. We are rebuilding China. We’re rebuilding many countries. China, you go there now, roads, bridges, schools, you never saw anything like it. They have bridges that make the George Washington Bridge look like small potatoes. And they’re all over the place.

We have all the cards, but we don’t know how to use them. We don’t even know that we have the cards, because our leaders don’t understand the game. We could turn off that spigot by charging them tax until they behave properly.

Now they’re going militarily. They’re building a military island in the middle of the South China sea. A military island. Now, our country could never do that because we’d have to get environmental clearance, and the environmentalist wouldn’t let our country— we would never build in an ocean. They built it in about one year, this massive military port.

They’re building up their military to a point that is very scary. You have a problem with ISIS. You have a bigger problem with China.

And, in my opinion, the new China, believe it or not, in terms of trade, is Mexico.

So this man tells me about the manufacturing. I say, “That’s a terrible story. I hate to hear it.”

But I have another one, Ford.

So Mexico takes a company, a car company that was going to build in Tennessee, rips it out. Everybody thought the deal was dead. Reported it in the Wall Street Journal recently. Everybody thought it was a done deal. It’s going in and that’s going to be it, going into Tennessee. Great state, great people.

All of a sudden, at the last moment, this big car manufacturer, foreign, announces they’re not going to Tennessee. They’re gonna spend their $1 billion in Mexico instead. Not good.

Now, Ford announces a few weeks ago that Ford is going to build a $2.5 billion car and truck and parts manufacturing plant in Mexico. $2.5 billion, it’s going to be one of the largest in the world. Ford. Good company.

So I announced that I’m running for president. I would…

… one of the early things I would do, probably before I even got in— and I wouldn’t even use— you know, I have— I know the smartest negotiators in the world. I know the good ones. I know the bad ones. I know the overrated ones.

You get a lot of them that are overrated. They’re not good. They think they are. They get good stories, because the newspapers get buffaloed. But they’re not good.

But I know the negotiators in the world, and I put them one for each country. Believe me, folks. We will do very, very well, very, very well.

But I wouldn’t even waste my time with this one. I would call up the head of Ford, who I know. If I was president, I’d say, “Congratulations. I understand that you’re building a nice $2.5 billion car factory in Mexico and that you’re going to take your cars and sell them to the United States zero tax, just flow them across the border.”

And you say to yourself, “How does that help us,” right? “How does that help us? Where is that good”? It’s not.

So I would say, “Congratulations. That’s the good news. Let me give you the bad news. Every car and every truck and every part manufactured in this plant that comes across the border, we’re going to charge you a 35-percent tax, and that tax is going to be paid simultaneously with the transaction, and that’s it.

Now, here’s what is going to happen. If it’s not me in the position, it’s one of these politicians that we’re running against, you know, the 400 people that we’re (inaudible). And here’s what’s going to happen. They’re not so stupid. They know it’s not a good thing, and they may even be upset by it. But then they’re going to get a call from the donors or probably from the lobbyist for Ford and say, “You can’t do that to Ford, because Ford takes care of me and I take care of you, and you can’t do that to Ford.”

And guess what? No problem. They’re going to build in Mexico. They’re going to take away thousands of jobs. It’s very bad for us.

So under President Trump, here’s what would happen:

The head of Ford will call me back, I would say within an hour after I told them the bad news. But it could be he’d want to be cool, and he’ll wait until the next day. You know, they want to be a little cool.

And he’ll say, “Please, please, please.” He’ll beg for a little while, and I’ll say, “No interest.” Then he’ll call all sorts of political people, and I’ll say, “Sorry, fellas. No interest,” because I don’t need anybody’s money. It’s nice. I don’t need anybody’s money.

I’m using my own money. I’m not using the lobbyists. I’m not using donors. I don’t care. I’m really rich. I (inaudible).

And by the way, I’m not even saying that’s the kind of mindset, that’s the kind of thinking you need for this country.

So— because we got to make the country rich.

It sounds crass. Somebody said, “Oh, that’s crass.” It’s not crass.

We got $18 trillion in debt. We got nothing but problems.

We got a military that needs equipment all over the place. We got nuclear weapons that are obsolete.

We’ve got nothing. We’ve got Social Security that’s going to be destroyed if somebody like me doesn’t bring money into the country. All these other people want to cut the hell out of it. I’m not going to cut it at all; I’m going to bring money in, and we’re going to save it.

But here’s what’s going to happen:

After I’m called by 30 friends of mine who contributed to different campaigns, after I’m called by all of the special interests and by the— the donors and by the lobbyists— and they have zero chance at convincing me, zero— I’ll get a call the next day from the head of Ford. He’ll say. “Please reconsider,” I’ll say no.

He’ll say, “Mr. President, we’ve decided to move the plant back to the United States, and we’re not going to build it in Mexico.” That’s it. They have no choice. They have no choice.

There are hundreds of things like that. I’ll give you another example.

Saudi Arabia, they make $1 billion a day. $1 billion a day. I love the Saudis. Many are in this building. They make a billion dollars a day. Whenever they have problems, we send over the ships. We say “we’re gonna protect.” What are we doing? They’ve got nothing but money.

If the right person asked them, they’d pay a fortune. They wouldn’t be there except for us.

And believe me, you look at the border with Yemen. You remember Obama a year ago, Yemen was a great victory. Two weeks later, the place was blown up. Everybody got out— and they kept our equipment.

They always keep our equipment. We ought to send used equipment, right? They always keep our equipment. We ought to send some real junk, because, frankly, it would be— we ought to send our surplus. We’re always losing this gorgeous brand-new stuff.

But look at that border with Saudi Arabia. Do you really think that these people are interested in Yemen? Saudi Arabia without us is gone. They’re gone.

And I’m the one that made all of the right predictions about Iraq. You know, all of these politicians that I’m running against now— it’s so nice to say I’m running as opposed to if I run, if I run. I’m running.

But all of these politicians that I’m running against now, they’re trying to disassociate. I mean, you looked at Bush, it took him five days to answer the question on Iraq. He couldn’t answer the question. He didn’t know. I said, “Is he intelligent?”

Then I looked at Rubio. He was unable to answer the question, is Iraq a good thing or bad thing? He didn’t know. He couldn’t answer the question.

How are these people gonna lead us? How are we gonna— how are we gonna go back and make it great again? We can’t. They don’t have a clue. They can’t lead us. They can’t. They can’t even answer simple questions. It was terrible.

But Saudi Arabia is in big, big trouble. Now, thanks to fracking and other things, the oil is all over the place. And I used to say it, there are ships at sea, and this was during the worst crisis, that were loaded up with oil, and the cartel kept the price up, because, again, they were smarter than our leaders. They were smarter than our leaders.

There is so much wealth out there that can make our country so rich again, and therefore make it great again. Because we need money. We’re dying. We’re dying. We need money. We have to do it. And we need the right people.

So Ford will come back. They’ll all come back. And I will say this, this is going to be an election, in my opinion, that’s based on competence.

Somebody said — thank you, darlin’.

Somebody said to me the other day, a reporter, a very nice reporter, “But, Mr. Trump, you’re not a nice person.”

That’s true. But actually I am. I think I am a nice person. People that know me, like me. Does my family like me? I think so, right. Look at my family. I’m proud of my family.

By the way, speaking of my family, Melania, Barron, Kai, Donnie, Don, Vanessa, Tiffany, Evanka did a great job. Did she do a great job?

Great. Jared, Laura and Eric, I’m very proud of my family. They’re a great family.

So the reporter said to me the other day, “But, Mr. Trump, you’re not a nice person. How can you get people to vote for you?”

I said, “I don’t know.” I said, “I think that number one, I am a nice person. I give a lot of money away to charities and other things. I think I’m actually a very nice person.”

But, I said, “This is going to be an election that’s based on competence, because people are tired of these nice people. And they’re tired of being ripped off by everybody in the world. And they’re tired of spending more money on education than any nation in the world per capita, than any nation in the world, and we are 26th in the world, 25 countries are better than us in education. And some of them are like third world countries. But we’re becoming a third word country, because of our infrastructure, our airports, our roads, everything. So one of the things I did, and I said, you know what I’ll do. I’ll do it. Because a lot of people said, “He’ll never run. Number one, he won’t want to give up his lifestyle.”

They’re right about that, but I’m doing it.

Number two, I’m a private company, so nobody knows what I’m worth. And the one thing is that when you run, you have to announce and certify to all sorts of governmental authorities your net worth.

So I said, “That’s OK.” I’m proud of my net worth. I’ve done an amazing job.

I started off— thank you— I started off in a small office with my father in Brooklyn and Queens, and my father said — and I love my father. I learned so much. He was a great negotiator. I learned so much just sitting at his feet playing with blocks listening to him negotiate with subcontractors. But I learned a lot.

But he used to say, “Donald, don’t go into Manhattan. That’s the big leagues. We don’t know anything about that. Don’t do it.”

I said, “I gotta go into Manhattan. I gotta build those big buildings. I gotta do it, Dad. I’ve gotta do it.”

And after four or five years in Brooklyn, I ventured into Manhattan and did a lot of great deals— the Grand Hyatt Hotel. I was responsible for the convention center on the west side. I did a lot of great deals, and I did them early and young. And now I’m building all over the world, and I love what I’m doing.

But they all said, a lot of the pundits on television, “Well, Donald will never run, and one of the main reasons is he’s private and he’s probably not as successful as everybody thinks.”

So I said to myself, you know, nobody’s ever going to know unless I run, because I’m really proud of my success. I really am.

I’ve employed— I’ve employed tens of thousands of people over my lifetime. That means medical. That means education. That means everything.

So a large accounting firm and my accountants have been working for months, because it’s big and complex, and they’ve put together a statement, a financial statement, just a summary. But everything will be filed eventually with the government, and we don’t [use] extensions or anything. We’ll be filing it right on time. We don’t need anything.

And it was even reported incorrectly yesterday, because they said, “He had assets of $9 billion.” So I said, “No, that’s the wrong number. That’s the wrong number. Not assets.”

So they put together this. And before I say it, I have to say this. I made it the old-fashioned way. It’s real estate. You know, it’s real estate.

It’s labor, and it’s unions good and some bad and lots of people that aren’t in unions, and it’s all over the place and building all over the world.

And I have assets— big accounting firm, one of the most highly respected— 9 billion 240 million dollars.

And I have liabilities of about $500 million. That’s long-term debt, very low interest rates.

In fact, one of the big banks came to me and said, “Donald, you don’t have enough borrowings. Could we loan you $4 billion”? I said, “I don’t need it. I don’t want it. And I’ve been there. I don’t want it.”

But in two seconds, they give me whatever I wanted. So I have a total net worth, and now with the increase, it’ll be well-over $10 billion. But here, a total net worth of—net worth, not assets, not— a net worth, after all debt, after all expenses, the greatest assets— Trump Tower, 1290 Avenue of the Americas, Bank of America building in San Francisco, 40 Wall Street, sometimes referred to as the Trump building right opposite the New York— many other places all over the world.

So the total is $8,737,540,00.

Now I’m not doing that…

I’m not doing that to brag, because you know what? I don’t have to brag. I don’t have to, believe it or not.

I’m doing that to say that that’s the kind of thinking our country needs. We need that thinking. We have the opposite thinking.

We have losers. We have losers. We have people that don’t have it. We have people that are morally corrupt. We have people that are selling this country down the drain.

So I put together this statement, and the only reason I’m telling you about it today is because we really do have to get going, because if we have another three or four years— you know, we’re at $8 trillion now. We’re soon going to be at $20 trillion.

According to the economists— who I’m not big believers in, but, nevertheless, this is what they’re saying— that $24 trillion— we’re very close— that’s the point of no return. $24 trillion. We will be there soon. That’s when we become Greece. That’s when we become a country that’s unsalvageable. And we’re gonna be there very soon. We’re gonna be there very soon.

So, just to sum up, I would do various things very quickly. I would repeal and replace the big lie, Obamacare.

I would build a great wall, and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me, and I’ll build them very inexpensively, I will build a great, great wall on our southern border. And I will have Mexico pay for that wall.

Mark my words.

Nobody would be tougher on ISIS than Donald Trump. Nobody.

I will find — within our military, I will find the General Patton or I will find General MacArthur, I will find the right guy. I will find the guy that’s going to take that military and make it really work. Nobody, nobody will be pushing us around.

I will stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons. And we won’t be using a man like Secretary Kerry that has absolutely no concept of negotiation, who’s making a horrible and laughable deal, who’s just being tapped along as they make weapons right now, and then goes into a bicycle race at 72 years old, and falls and breaks his leg. I won’t be doing that. And I promise I will never be in a bicycle race. That I can tell you.

I will immediately terminate President Obama’s illegal executive order on immigration, immediately.

Fully support and back up the Second Amendment.

Now, it’s very interesting. Today I heard it. Through stupidity, in a very, very hard core prison, interestingly named Clinton, two vicious murderers, two vicious people escaped, and nobody knows where they are. And a woman was on television this morning, and she said, “You know, Mr. Trump,” and she was telling other people, and I actually called her, and she said, “You know, Mr. Trump, I always was against guns. I didn’t want guns. And now since this happened”— it’s up in the prison area— “my husband and I are finally in agreement, because he wanted the guns. We now have a gun on every table. We’re ready to start shooting.”

I said, “Very interesting.”

So protect the Second Amendment.

End— end Common Core. Common Core should— it is a disaster. Bush is totally in favor of Common Core. I don’t see how he can possibly get the nomination. He’s weak on immigration. He’s in favor of Common Core. How the hell can you vote for this guy? You just can’t do it. We have to end education has to be local.

Rebuild the country’s infrastructure.

Nobody can do that like me. Believe me. It will be done on time, on budget, way below cost, way below what anyone ever thought.

I look at the roads being built all over the country, and I say I can build those things for one-third. What they do is unbelievable, how bad.

You know, we’re building on Pennsylvania Avenue, the Old Post Office, we’re converting it into one of the world’s great hotels. It’s gonna be the best hotel in Washington, D.C. We got it from the General Services Administration in Washington. The Obama administration. We got it. It was the most highly sought after— or one of them, but I think the most highly sought after project in the history of General Services. We got it. People were shocked, Trump got it.

Well, I got it for two reasons. Number one, we’re really good. Number two, we had a really good plan. And I’ll add in the third, we had a great financial statement. Because the General Services, who are terrific people, by the way, and talented people, they wanted to do a great job. And they wanted to make sure it got built.

So we have to rebuild our infrastructure, our bridges, our roadways, our airports. You come into La Guardia Airport, it’s like we’re in a third world country. You look at the patches and the 40-year-old floor. They throw down asphalt, and they throw.

You look at these airports, we are like a third world country. And I come in from China and I come in from Qatar and I come in from different places, and they have the most incredible airports in the world. You come to back to this country and you have LAX, disaster. You have all of these disastrous airports. We have to rebuild our infrastructure.

Save Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security without cuts. Have to do it.

Get rid of the fraud. Get rid of the waste and abuse, but save it. People have been paying it for years. And now many of these candidates want to cut it. You save it by making the United States, by making us rich again, by taking back all of the money that’s being lost.

Renegotiate our foreign trade deals.

Reduce our $18 trillion in debt, because, believe me, we’re in a bubble. We have artificially low interest rates. We have a stock market that, frankly, has been good to me, but I still hate to see what’s happening. We have a stock market that is so bloated.

Be careful of a bubble because what you’ve seen in the past might be small potatoes compared to what happens. So be very, very careful.

And strengthen our military and take care of our vets. So, so important.

Sadly, the American dream is dead.

But if I get elected president I will bring it back bigger and better and stronger than ever before, and we will make America great again.

Thank you. Thank you very much.

Read next: How Donald Trump Stole Jeb Bush’s Moment

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TIME 2016 Election

Bill Clinton Opens Up on Marriage, Hillary’s Bid for President

Mark Mezvinsky, Hillary Clinton, Chelsea Clinton, Bill Clinton
William Regan/AP Former President Bill Clinton, right, and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, second from right, wave to the media as Marc Mezvinsky and Chelsea Clinton pose for photographers with their newborn baby, Charlotte, after the family leaves Manhattan's Lenox Hill hospital in New York.

"I believe in you. You've got this," Hillary told Bill after his Arkansas loss

Bill Clinton lifted the veil on America’s most enigmatic political couple—at least slightly. In an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper, which is to air in its entirety on Sunday at 9 a.m., Clinton described the couple’s personal and political relationship, and how they constantly negotiate the two.

The former president admitted that his political aspirations took the front seat during the first two decades of their marriage, and referred to Hillary as his “rock” during politically and personally tumultuous times.

He pointed to his 1980 loss to Republican Frank D. White in the Arkansas gubernatorial election as one such moment.

“I was the youngest former governor in American history in 1980 on election night…My career prospects were not particularly bright,” he said to Tapper. “And she never blinked. She just said, ‘Hey. It’ll turn around. I believe in you. You’ve got this.'”

Bill implied that now was Hillary’s time, echoing sentiments he shared in a 2014 interview with “BBC Newsnight” in India. In that interview, he described their marriage as a 52-year pact.

“We were married a very long time when she was always, in effect, deferring to my political career,” he said. “I told her when she got elected to the Senate from New York that she’d given me 26 years, and so I intended to give her 26 years. Whatever she wanted to do was fine with me. If she wanted to know my opinion, I would tell her, but she had carte blanche to make whatever decisions she wanted, and tell me what I was supposed to do about it.”

Bill has taken a backseat in Hillary’s campaign. Though he plans to be by her side at her first rally of the campaign on Saturday, he has yet to travel or raise money for her. This was not the case in her 2008 bid.

[CNN]

TIME

Bill Clinton Will Stop Giving Paid Speeches if Hillary Becomes President

MOROCCO-CONFERENCE-ECONOMY-DEVELOPMENT
Fadel Senna—/Getty Images Former U.S. president and founding chairman of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), Bill Clinton, gestures during the opening session of the CGI Middle East and Africa in Marrakesh, Morocco on May 6, 2015

The former president earns an average of $250,000 per speech

Former President Bill Clinton said he will most likely stop giving paid speeches if his wife Hillary is elected president.

The Clintons have been dogged by questions about potential conflicts of interest around their foundation and the amounts they’ve earned from high-profile speaking engagements.

When asked by Bloomberg Television whether he would continue to give paid speeches if Hillary Clinton is elected president, Bill Clinton replied: “I don’t think so.”

Read more from our partners at nbcnews.com

TIME fashion

This Is How Much Hillary Clinton’s Pantsuit Costs

Hillary Clinton delivers remarks during the 2015 Toner Prize for Excellence in Political Reporting award in Washington
© Joshua Roberts / Reuters—REUTERS Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delivers remarks during the 2015 Toner Prize for Excellence in Political Reporting award in Washington March 23, 2015. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts - RTR4UKB6

Dressing like a presidential hopeful is not cheap

As Hillary Clinton graces stage after stage during her 2016 presidential campaign, she’s sure to be wearing her signature look: the pantsuit.

Her campaign has even made light of her penchant for pantsuits by selling a t-shirt version of the trademark style. You can buy the “Everyday Pantsuit Tee” for $30.

The real thing will cost you a tad more, up to $1,400.

Jackets by designer Nina McLemore—who has sold Clinton many a pantsuit, according to Politico—will set buyers back between $500 and $1,000. Pants cost about $400.

The outspoken designer, who also dresses Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, and Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan, is selling more than just clothes. She also encourages women to embrace fashion as a powerful communication tool.

“I personally think it’s hard for women to have charisma, where some men have it in spades. We can’t change the fact that we’re women, but we can put forth our best image for the result we want,” she told Politico.

TIME 2016 presidential election

Carly Fiorina Says She Would ‘Roll Back’ Net Neutrality Rules

Republican presidential hopeful Carly Fiorina speaks at TechCrunchÕs Disrupt conference on May 5, 2015 in New York City.
Andrew Burton—Getty Images Republican presidential hopeful Carly Fiorina speaks at TechCrunchÕs Disrupt conference on May 5, 2015 in New York City.

And she wants the government to use technology to "re-engage" people

Carly Fiorina said Tuesday in her first public appearance since announcing her candidacy for the GOP nomination that she would “roll back” the new rules on net neutrality.

The former Hewlett-Packard CEO, arguably the presidential candidate with the most experience in the tech industry, came out swinging against the regulations in a talk at TechCrunch’s Disrupt event in New York City. “You don’t manage innovation, you let innovation flourish,” she said. “Regulation over innovation is a really bad role for government.”

Other Republican hopefuls have also come out in recent months against net neutrality—or the idea that all web content is treated equally—perhaps in opposition to Obama or in order to protect campaign donations, despite the fact that 85% of Republican voters say they oppose the creation of Internet “fast lanes.”

MORE: Why 2016 Republicans Oppose Net Neutrality

At other points during the talk, Fiorina pointed to her experience in the tech industry as a qualification for the Oval Office. “It is important to have someone in the White House who has a fundamental understanding of technology, and a fundamental vision of how technology could be used,” she said, adding that she hopes to use technology to “re-engage” people in politics.

Fiorina also addressed the industry’s inequalities for women, noting that they are “caricatured differently, criticized differently, scrutinized differently, because we’re still different.” To that end, she noted that she was pleased Hillary Clinton is also running for the Democratic nomination. “Obviously I’m running to beat Hillary Clinton, but I think It’s great there there are women on both sides of the aisle running for the highest office in the land.”

When the interviewer, a female journalist, asked Fiorina if she would consider a Vice Presidential slot, she bristled and replied: “Would you ever ask a man that question?”

In the past, male presidential candidates like former North Carolina Senator John Edwards and former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson have been asked whether they’re running for VP, and the idea has also been posed for former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, a presumed Democratic candidate. After the journalist responded that she would, the candidate said, “I’m not running for something else, I’m running because I want this job, and I think I can do this job.”

Read next: Carly Fiorina Calls Foul on Vice President Quesion

TIME 2016 Election

Trump Forming Exploratory Committee for 2016 Presidential Bid

<> on February 27, 2015 in Washington, DC.
Alex Wong—Getty Images Donald Trump speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference in February.

Donald Trump announced Wednesday he is forming a presidential exploratory committee for 2016, marking the fourth election cycle since 1999 that the eccentric real estate mogul has flirted with a White House bid.

“I have a great love for our country, but it is a country that is in serious trouble,” Trump said. “I am the only one who can make America truly great again!”

Trump said in a statement that he has made “several key hires” in early primary states including Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, and has a staff of political advisers based in New York.

Michael Cohen, special counsel to Trump, declined to give further details about the businessman’s staff or his exploratory committee. “I can confirm that he remains serious about running for the office of the presidency,” said Cohen. “Specifics will be released by Mr. Trump in a short period of time.”

Trump has a long-standing habit of feigning at a run for the White House. In 2011, he delayed the renewal of his hit television show The Celebrity Apprentice and fanned speculation he was running for president, only to announce he was not running. Trump said in run-up to 2004 he was “very seriously” mulling a bid, and in 1999 he formed an exploratory committee and considered running that year as an Independent.

This year, Trump has said he’s “more serious than ever before” about running for president, a trope he also invoked in 2011. “A lot of people think I’m doing this for fun, they think it’s good for my brand,” Trump said last month at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Maryland. “I’m not doing this for fun. I’m doing this because we have to take our country back.”

The flashy and outspoken star of The Celebrity Apprentice would face significant challenges if he chooses to run for president. Nearly three-quarters of GOP primary voters said they couldn’t see themselves supporting Donald Trump in a presidential run, according to a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, uniting more Republicans against his candidacy than any other potential candidate.

In 2000, Trump said he supported federal single-payer health care, a platform that is wildly unpopular among conservatives, and at one time supported a net worth tax of 14.25% on all Americans worth more than $10 million to repay the national debt.

Trump has a booked travel schedule in the next three months, Cohen said, and will be speaking often in the early primary states. He be in New Hampshire this Thursday to meet with local veterans and business owners.

Cohen said Trump has not yet renewed his show The Celebrity Apprentice.

“Nobody in the history of television has turned down a renewal,” a political advisor to Trump, Corey Lewandowski, told the New Hampshire Union Leader. “But Mr. Trump can do that.”

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