John Kasich slammed Trump, and said that he'd probably find a way to claim that he was "misquoted." Given Trump's history of getting butthurt when subjected to criticism, this was an astute prediction. And lo and behold, this is exactly what he did!
"That was a hypothetical question. It was not a wrong answer." Trump told Fox News host Sean Hannity during his Monday night show in Wisconsin. "There were other people that wrote me letters by the hundreds saying that it was a great answer to that question the way it was raised."Are these "hundreds" of people also hypothetical? And did he only "hypothetically" insult Chris Matthews in his next statement?
"I did this show because it's not a high-rated show. He's always been--I mean, he's never treated me badly. And I didn't think it was a big thing to do the show, and as a hypothetical question you give a hypothetical answer, and I didn't see the big, big, huge deal."Trump also complained that John Kasich gave a bad answer to a question on abortion and it got no coverage. Because of course he did. This is pretty much a prototypical Donald Trump reaction to criticism. It goes in four points. Dodge the criticism, claim that numerous people are on his side, insult the person who asked him the original question, and complain that the other candidates aren't getting as much scrutiny as he is.
The Dodging: Trump claimed that it was just a hypothetical question, meaning that his answer is also hypothetical, and therefore it can't be a wrong answer
The Claims of Support: Trump claimed that "hundreds" of people sent him letters that told him he gave a "great answer," ignoring the fact that his answer was different from his first answer in which he unmistakably said that the woman would receive "some form of punishment." Broad, blanket statements claiming that "hundreds of people liked my answer," can't be fact-checked and proven wrong, therefore Trump is right
The Insult: A classic staple of Mr. Trump--one that makes him so successful in politics--is his use of the ad hominem fallacy, in which he attacks the person making the argument rather than the substance of the argument itself. Hence, his snipe at the "not high" ratings of Chris Matthews' show. Since the ratings are low, his answer shouldn't be a "big deal," and is therefore not wrong
The Complaints: Trump complained that the media is biased against him because John Kasich also gave a bad answer on abortion and there was no coverage. This is despite the fact that Trump previously stated that his answer was hypothetical, and is therefore not bad. This is also despite the fact that there was coverage of this.
This makes me wonder how Trump would respond to criticism as President. Would British criticism of his actions be invalid because America is a more popular place to live than Britain? Would he not be responsible for any tension he inflames if he threatens to bomb a country because bombing of said country is just a "hypothetical" scenario? Would it be okay for him to ignore the Bill of Rights because he gets a lot of letters from people saying they agree with him?