Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump remindedAmericans about a 2008 Hillary Clinton campaign ad, the deadly terror attack in Benghazi, Libya during Clinton’s tenure as Secretary of State, and defended his use of Twitter during the second presidential debate.
Moderator Anderson Cooper of CNN went after Trump, questioning whether the candidate was disciplined. In reference to a tweet at close to 3 a.m., Cooper selectively repeated four words of one 25 word tweet:
In 2008, you wrote in one of your books the most important characteristic of a good leader is discipline. You said if a leader doesn’t have it “He or she won’t be one for very long.” In the days after the first debate, you sent out a series of tweets from 3 a.m. to 5 a.m., including one that told people to check out a sex tape. Is that the discipline of a good leader?
Trump later responded to criticism of tweeting late at night:
For those few people knocking me for tweeting at three o'clock in the morning, at least you know I will be there, awake, to answer the call!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 30, 2016
Trump responded to Cooper, “No, it wasn’t check out a sex tape. It was just take a look at the person she built up to be this wonderful girl scout who was no girl scout. By the way, just so you understand, when she said 3 o’clock in the morning, take a look at Benghazi. She said who’s going to answer it the call at 3 o’clock in the morning. Guess what, she didn’t answer because when ambassador Stevens.”
Cooper followed up on his question, interrupting Trump: “The question is, is that the discipline of a good leader?”
Six-hundred times. Well she said she was awake at 3 o’clock in the morning and she also sent a tweet out at 3:00 in the morning, but I won’t even mention that. But, she said she’ll be awake.
Ambassador Stevens sent 600 requests for help and the only one she talked to was Sidney Blumenthal, who’s her friend and not a good guy by the way. So you know, she shouldn’t be talking about that. Now, tweeting happens to be a modern day form of communication. I mean, you can like it or not like it. I have, between Facebook and Twitter, I have almost 25 million people. It’s a very effective way of communication. So you can put it down, but it is a very effective form of communication. I’m not unproud of it to be honest with you.
Cooper then tried to ask Hillary Clinton the same question about Trump.
“Secretary Clinton, does Mr. Trump have the discipline to be a good leader.”
Clinton responded, “No,” to which Trump said “I’m shocked to hear that.”
In the 2008 presidential primary election, Clinton’s primary election campaign ran a television ad asking viewers who they want answer the phone at the White House at 3 a.m. when “something’s happening in the world.” She lost that primary election to then-Sen. Barack Obama.
Clinton has been criticized for not being more responsive during the terror attack on Americans in Benghazi. Documents have revealed that in the days following Clinton slept in and missed an intelligence briefing involving “sensitive items” in the days following the deadly terror attack.
Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter: @MichelleDiana