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(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); New Hampshire: Trump repeats insult from crowd member calling Cruz 'a pussy' - Algeria latest news

Donald Trump used his final rally before Tuesday’s New Hampshire presidential primary to sling a litany of insults at his rivals on Monday, and raised eyebrows when he repeated an offensive remark from a member in the crowd who shouted that Ted Cruz’s position on waterboarding made him “a pussy”.

The Republican frontrunner for the White House also mocked Jeb Bush and saidMarco Rubio was “sweating like a dog” during this weekend’s debate. But his reiteration of a vulgarity shouted by a female supporter in the Verizon Center on Monday evening was likely the first time in American history that a major presidential candidate used a phrase widely considered obscene in a televised rally, let alone used the word to refer to his nearest competitor for public office.

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Trump was berating Cruz for giving an equivocal answer during the debate on Saturday, when multiple candidates were pressed on whether waterboarding constituted torture and whether any of them would bring it back. Trump had reiterated that night that he would “bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding”, but on Monday he went after the Texas senator as weak.

“The other night in the debate,” he told thousands in Manchester, “they askedTed Cruz a serious question: what do you think of waterboarding? Is it OK? I thought he’d say absolutely, and he didn’t. And he said, well, he’s concerned because some people –”

A woman near the front of the crowd interrupted. “He’s a pussy!”

Trump admonished her for saying “a terrible thing”.

“You know what she just said?” he asked. “Shout it out, because I don’t want to say it.”

“You’re not allowed to say that,” he continued. “I never expect to hear that from you again.”

Trump paused, looked out at his election-eve audience and leaned into the microphone: “She said he’s a pussy.”

The audience cheered – shouting “Trump! Trump!” – before he gave the woman a mock admonishment and returned to his rambling, more than 45-minute speech. “For the press,” he said, looking up at the television cameras, “this is a serious reprimand.”

During the debate, Cruz had given a hesitant answer on waterboarding as the Texas senator tries to maintain his national security bona fides while appealing to former supporters of libertarian icon Rand Paul.

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At a December rally in Michigan, he said of Hillary Clinton that she was “schlonged” during her 2008 Democratic primary loss to Barack Obama. Trump has had other brushes with vulgarity in the course of the campaign as well, pledging to “bomb the shit out of Isis” and implying that he received tough questioning from Fox News host Megyn Kelly in the first Republican debatebecause she was menstruating.

But the use of the phrase “pussy” on air and onstage marked a dramatic change from Trump’s more passive tone in recent weeks. He was significantly more mellow on the campaign trail one night before the Iowa caucuses, replacing his standard stumpspeech with question-and-answer sessions led by moderators like the evangelical Jerry Falwell Jr.

After a week of trying to soften his imagefor social conservatives in the midwest, he has returned to his openly confrontational style in New Hampshire, where voters are far more moderate and blue collar.

In a statement, Cruz spokesperson Catherine Frazier told the Guardian this was “just the latest episode of the reality show that Donald has made the 2016 campaign – let’s not forget who whipped who in Iowa”.

He was, however, impressed with the size of the crowd, despite snow falling across New Hampshire hours before voting opened in a state where he has led in every poll since July.In addition to insulting Cruz, Bush and Rubio, the frontrunner jokingly dismissed his own voters. “I don’t really care if you get hurt or not, I want you to last until tomorrow,” he said of those struggling with the snowstorm gripping New Hampshire. In January he said, “I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters.”

He said there was “I won’t mention names, how many people are at the other candidates [rallies]?”

But he did name names, and talked some more about the weather. “Global warming? We got a blizzard outside! There’s no warming.”

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