Tuesday on MSNBC, while discussing his tweet during last night’s debate saying Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump may be a “coke user” because Trump sniffed several times, the former Democratic National Committee chair Howard Dean doubled down, saying “I’m suggesting we think about it.”
Notice Trump sniffing all the time. Coke user?
— Howard Dean (@GovHowardDean) September 27, 2016
Partial transcript as follows:
KATE SNOW: So, following a bunch of sniffles, Governor Dean, you wrote on Twitter, “Notice Trump sniffing all the time. Coke user?” Why did you go there?
HOWARD DEAN: You can’t make a diagnosis over the television. I would never do that, but he has some interesting — that is actually a signature of people who use cocaine. I’m not suggesting that Trump does, but —
SNOW: Well, you are suggesting it, actually, in a tweet.
DEAN: No. I’m suggesting we think about it. Here’s the interesting constellation. So, he sniffs during the presentation, which is something that users do. He also has grandiosity, which is something that accompanies that problem. He has delusions. I’m not talking about being crazy, but, for example, when he told everybody it was very smart not to pay taxes and then denied he said it, after he said it in front of 100 million people. It’s not that he’s delusional about it. It’s that he thinks somehow he’s going to not get caught. That is delusional. He has trouble with pressured speech. He interrupted Hillary Clinton 29 times. He couldn’t keep himself together. So, look, do I think at 70 years old he has a cocaine habit? Probably not. But, you know, it’s something that — I think it would be interesting to ask him and see if he ever had a problem with that.
SNOW: So, as a physician and as a medical person yourself, you’re suggesting we ought to look at whether the Republican candidate for president has a cocaine habit?
DEAN: No, I don’t think he has a cocaine habit. Again, I don’t make any diagnosis over the television. I don’t. I think that’s wrong. I think doctors shouldn’t do it. Doctors have done it in the past and they shouldn’t do it. But I was just struck by the sniffing and then by his behavior, which all sort of came together, these four symptoms. You know, do I think he has a cocaine habit? I think it’s unlikely you could mount a presidential campaign at age 70 with a cocaine habit, but it was pretty striking.
SNOW: This reminds me of Rudy Giuliani raising medical questions about your candidate Hillary Clinton to which your campaign said, this is inappropriate. We shouldn’t be raising questions about Hillary Clinton’s health without substance or proof. You don’t see the parallel?
DEAN: Donald Trump has not made his tax returns public or medical records public in any meaningful way. Hillary Clinton has done that and asked any questions they want to raise
SNOW: What if a Trump supporter suggested Hillary Clinton was using drugs last night?
DEAN: I suspect she would have said, no, and here’s my medical report that shows so.
SNOW: So, you’re saying Donald Trump should answer your question?
DEAN: No. What I’m saying is, I raised the question last night. I don’t make diagnoses on the television. I think you can’t do that. It was medically improper and I don’t think you should. But I don’t think this was a ridiculous idea. Something funny was going on with Trump last night. Do I think it was cocaine? Probably not. But, you know, again, the sniffling, the grandiosity, the delusions, the pressured speech. This guy has already proven himself to be unstable. The question is, why is he unstable?
SNOW: You’re not going to delete the tweet? You don’t regret it? You’re not going to apologize for it, is that right?
DEAN: Absolutely right.