WASHINGTON – Bracing for a big political week, President Donald Trump said in a Super Bowl Sunday interview that voters will look to his record rather than impeachment in deciding to re-elect him in November.
“There’s a revolution going on in this country, I mean a positive revolution,” Trump told Fox News host Sean Hannity in an interview taped Saturday and broadcast on the pre-game show Sunday.
The interview came less than a week before Trump’s annual State of the Union address, the expected end of the Senate impeachment trial, and the Democratic caucuses Monday in Iowa.
While Trump said tax cuts and military spending increases will be major arguments in his re-election campaign, he said he doubted he could work on any new legislation with Congress this year. He cited frayed relations with Democratic congressional leaders like Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer.
“I’d like to, but it’s pretty hard when you think about it,” Trump said, criticizing Democratic-backed investigations ranging from the probes into Russia’s involvement in the 2016 election to the impeachment inquiry of Trump’s dealings with Ukraine.
“It’s been very unfair,” he said.
Under questions from Hannity, a Fox News host who attended a 2018 campaign rally with Trump at which he interviewed him, the president also seized the chance to attack Democratic rivals with familiar barbs.
Trump called Bernie Sanders “a communist,” described Joe Biden as “sleepy,” and claimed Elizabeth Warren’s political platform is “a fairy tale.” (He also again attacked 2016 election opponent Hillary Clinton, and described Speaker Pelosi as a “very confused, very nervous woman.”)
Sanders, Biden, and Warren have all said Trump attacks them because he knows he will lose the fall election to the Democratic candidate.
At another point, Trump again mocked Michael Bloomberg for his height and claimed without evidence that he “wants a box” to stand on during future Democratic debates.
“Why should he be entitled to that?” Trump said. “Really. Does that mean everyone else gets a box?”
Denying the needs any kind of box, Bloomberg said Trump “lies about everything,” and is obviously scared of him in a general election.
While campaigning in California, Trump said “I will stand on my accomplishments,” and added that “I stand twice as tall as he does on the stage, the stage that matters.”
Bloomberg campaign spokesperson Julie Wood went farther, saying a statement that Trump is “a pathological liar who lies about everything: His fake hair, his obesity, and his spray-on tan.”
During the Super Bowl interview, Trump also pledged to work with China to contain the coronavirus. Trump told Hannity that “we pretty much shut it down coming in from China,” but global health officials remain concerned about possible spread of the deadly virus.
As for the Super Bowl, Trump praised sports in general as a “sort of a little bit of a microcosm of life.”
The Trump campaign paid some $10 million for a pair of Super Bowl ads.
The president spent the weekend at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Fla., and planned to return to Washington, D.C., on Sunday night.
While the impeachment trial is ongoing, Trump said he still plans to deliver his State of the Union speech Tuesday night as scheduled. He told Hannity he will use the speech to “talk about the achievements that we’ve made.”
The Republican-run Senate, which is expected to acquit Trump, has a vote on the verdict set for Wednesday afternoon.
House Democratic impeachment prosecutors accused Trump of urging Ukraine to investigate Biden and his son Hunter, who had business interests in the city. They also said he withheld aid from Ukraine in order to get them to comply with the request and thereby thrust themselves into the midst of the U.S. presidential election.
Most Senate Republicans said the House Democrats failed to make their case and voted against requests to call witnesses.