WASHINGTON — Donald Trump latest’s close-up is coming from the unlikeliest of magazines: Rolling Stone.
The magazine, well known for its progressive bent, interviewed and photographed Trump for its Sept. 24 cover.
The article’s most-talked-about passage on Wednesday was a Trump comment about rival Republican 2016 candidate Carly Fiorina.
Writer Paul Solotaroff was sitting with Trump watching a newscast when a video clip zoomed in on Fiorina.
“Look at that face! Would anyone vote for that?” Trump said to Solotaroff. “Can you imagine that, the face of our next president.”
Trump added, “I mean, she’s a woman, and I’m not s’posedta say bad things, but really, folks, come on. Are we serious?”
Solotaroff continued his cover story (headlined “Taking Trump Seriously”) by saying:
“And there, in a nutshell, is Trump’s blessing and his curse: He can’t seem to quit while he’s ahead. The instincts that carried him out to a lead and have kept him far above the captious field are the same ones that landed him in ugly stews with ex-wives, business partners, networks, supermodels and many, many other famous women.”
The quotes stirred controversy on Twitter on Wednesday evening. A spokeswoman for the Trump campaign declined to comment.
But Trump went on CNN on Thursday morning to say he was talking about Fiorina’s “persona.”
“I’m not talking about looks. I’m talking about persona,” Trump said.
Trump did not refute the accuracy of the quote.Fiorina declined the opportunity to punch back Wednesday night on Fox News with Megyn Kelly, perhaps preferring instead to let Trump roll around in his own controversy.
“Well, I think those comments speak for themselves,” Fiorina said. “Honestly, Megyn, I’m not going to spend a single cycle wondering what Donald Trump means.”
But then, sensing an opportunity, Fiorina added: “Maybe — just maybe — I’m getting under his skin a little bit because I am climbing in the polls.”
The story also reveals that Trump has not totally moved on from his well-documented feud last month with the Fox News Channel.Most recently, he was absent from the network for two weeks after criticizing Kelly.
While spending time with Solotaroff, Trump handed the writer a copy of a New York magazine article titled “How Roger Ailes Picked Trump, and Fox News’ Audience, Over Megyn Kelly.”
It was the same article he handed to New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd when she visited him a couple of weeks ago.
“I don’t start these fights, but I sure as hell win them,” Trump told Solotaroff.