Real estate mogul Donald Trump is leaving his show on NBC to form an exploratory committee to raise money for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination. Trump has tinkered with running for president in the past.
The New Hampshire Union Leader reported Tuesday Trump will not host another season of The Apprentice as he will be forming an exploratory committee for the first time ever. He flirted with a run in 2012 and has made several appearances on television, but this is his first serious foray into the political spectrum.
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Along with the exploratory committee, Trump hired New Hampshire political operative Corey Lewandowski as a senior adviser last month, the Union Leader noted. Trump turned down the offer of a renewal of The Apprentice for another season from senior producer Mark Burnett, who reached out to Trump personally, Lewandowski told the publication.
“Nobody in the history of television has turned down a renewal,” Lewandowski said. “But Mr. Trump can do that.”
At CPAC last month, Trump told Western Journalism:
Well, the country needs help. It’s in such trouble. It is in such a mess.
We have a leader that doesn’t know how to lead and he doesn’t have the right ideas. And I think he’s got his own ideas, either that or he’s totally incompetent. And we have a country that needs help and it needs help quickly and badly.
In a statement announcing the exploratory committee, the now former NBC host echoed similar sentiments Tuesday:
I have a great love for our country, but it is a country that is in serious trouble. We have lost the respect of the entire world.
Americans deserve better than what they get from their politicians – who are all talk and no action! I have built a great company, created thousands of jobs and built a tremendous net worth with some of the finest and most prestigious assets in the world – and very little debt!
All Americans deserve the same opportunity. Our real unemployment rate is staggering while our manufacturing base is eroding on a daily basis. We must rebuild our infrastructure, control our borders, support local control of education, greatly strengthen our military, care for our veterans and put Americans back to work!
We must stop other countries from totally taking advantage of our representatives who are being out-negotiated at every turn. I am the only one who can make America truly great again!”
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