President Donald Trump mocked newly announced presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke on Thursday, saying the Texan moves his hands too much and that he might be “crazy.”
O’Rourke, a former congressman, announced his bid for president on Thursday with a video filmed in his hometown of El Paso. In it, O’Rourke sits next to his wife, Amy, and articulates his vision for the nation, making sweeping hand gestures to emphasize his various points in the 3½-minute clip.
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He also gave an animated performance in an Iowa coffee shop on Thursday morning that was broadcast live on both CNN and MSNBC.
“I’ve never seen so much hand movement,” Trump said to reporters, adding that he’d watched O’Rourke in what he called a news conference earlier that day. “I said: ‘Is he crazy or is that just the way he acts?’”
The president declined to say whether O’Rourke or former Vice President Joe Biden would prove a greater threat to his reelection campaign, instead touting a strong economy as a challenge for the Democrat who runs against him.
“Whoever it is, I’ll take him or her on,” Trump said.
O’Rourke rose to fame within his party after a failed, but improbably close, run for the Senate against incumbent Republican Ted Cruz in November. In the months since, O’Rourke has publicly mused about a presidential campaign, and is joining the race as a top-tier contender known for his small-dollar fundraising abilities.