Let the branding begin!
On Thursday, President Donald Trump was asked by the press to react to Democrat Robert "Beto" O'Rourke's 2020 presidential bid announcement. And in true Trump-fashion, the president, known for mercilessly branding his opponents, mocked the media-beloved O'Rourke for his excessive "hand movement," the likes of which Trump said he's "never seen" before.
"Well I think he's got a lot of hand movement; I've never seen so much hand movement," Trump told reporters during an Oval Office meeting alongside Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar.
"I said, 'Is he crazy or is that just the way he acts?' So I've never seen hand movement – I watched him a little while this morning – doing I assume it was some kind of a news conference," the president continued.
It's unclear where the laughter heard in the video is coming from, but it seems some in the media laughed at Trump's comical remarks.
"And I've actually never seen anything quite like it. Study it. I'm sure you'll agree," Trump added.
O'Rourke posted a video to social media on Thursday morning to officially announce his 2020 presidential bid, which has been rumored for some time despite the Democrat's past insistence that he would definitely not make a run for the White House.
"I am running to serve you as the next president," O'Rourke captioned his video. "The challenges we face are the greatest in living memory. No one person can meet them on their own. Only this country can do that, and only if we build a movement that includes all of us. Say you're in: BetoORourke.com."
O'Rourke is sitting on a couch alongside his wife during the announcement. And as President Trump noted, there are lots of "hand movements."
In October, Trump campaigned for former-foe and then-O'Rourke opponent Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX). During a speech backing Cruz, Trump called the Republican's Senate challenger a “stone cold phony named Robert Francis O’Rourke, who is sometimes referred to as Beto and pretends to be moderate," reported Deadline.
The president also blasted O'Rourke for his F rating from the National Rifle Association (NRA). "You know what F means?" he told the crowd. "He wants to take away your guns!”
As noted by The Daily Wire on Thursday morning, rumors that O'Rourke will team with former Vice President Joe Biden for a prime Democrat 2020 ticket have circulated for some time. "Advisers to former Vice President Joe Biden, who is considering a White House run of his own, said in December that they’d approached O’Rourke’s camp about his being a vice presidential candidate," reported Marketwatch last month.
Trump has effectively hit past opponents on both sides of the aisle with strategic nicknames and mockery. For example, Trump branded Senator Cruz as "Lyin' Ted," Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) as "Little Marco," former Governor Jeb Bush (R-FL) as "low energy," twice-failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton as "Crooked Hillary," Senator Elizabeth Warren as “Pocahontas,” and Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) as “Crazy Bernie.”