The 2016 presidential campaign makes no more sense in hindsight than when it actually happened. Both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton made so many unforced, egregious errors that would have destroyed the campaigns of any other presidential candidate; both were kept afloat by their opponent’s mistakes and controversial history. We’re left with an historic election people will be talking about for years to come … and some strange quotes. We’ll limit Trump’s and Clinton’s ridiculous quotes to one apiece.
10. “You’re awake … you’re not having a terrible, terrible dream. Also, you’re not dead and you haven’t gone to hell. This is your life now. This is our election now. … This is our country.”
— MSNBC host Rachel Maddow, voicing the thoughts and feelings of many liberals on election night when it became apparent Trump had won the presidency.
9. “It may not be good for America, but it’s damn good for CBS.”
— CBS Chairman and CEO Leslie Moonves, telling investors that Trump’s candidacy was a boon for the network’s ratings.
8. “And what is Aleppo?”
— Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson, after an MSNBC commentator asked him what he would do about the conditions in Syria’s largest city. Johnson appeared not to know the name of the city that has been devastated by civil war and is the epicenter of that country’s refugee crisis.
7. “(Hillary Clinton) coughs more than Bob Marley giving a hernia test on top of Mount Everest. Whatever she has, her deductible is going to be prohibitive under the Obamacare she jammed through.”
— Comedian and political commentator Dennis Miller on The Bill “O’Reilly Factor, joking about Clinton’s frequent coughing spells.
6. “So the only checks and balances we have are us, The View. That’s it!”
— The View co-host Joy Behar, saying she was worried that a Trump presidency, and GOP-controlled Senate and House, leaves no checks and balances in the federal government.
5. “(Trump is an) orange, sexual-assaulting, fake-college-starting monster.”
— Comedian Amy Schumer, at a comedy show in Tampa in October. Some 200 fans walked out of the event after she insulted the GOP candidate.
4. “I told y’all I didn’t vote, right? But if I would have voted, I would have voted on Trump.”
— Rapper Kanye West, telling the audience at one of his concerts he supported Trump. The audience erupted in boos. West still plans to run for president in 2020.
3. “Although we did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information, there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information.”
— FBI Director James Comey’s July 5 revelation that the bureau would not recommend criminal charges against Hillary Clinton got her off the legal hook, but cast doubt on her judgment. Why is this quote bizarre? Because we had a candidate running for president while under FBI investigation, something unprecedented in U.S. history.
2. “You know, to just be grossly generalistic, you could put half of Trump’s supporters into what I call the ‘basket of deplorables.’ Right? The racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic — you name it.”
— Hillary Clinton’s “basket of deplorables” comments at a September fundraiser will live in infamy.
1. “I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody, and I wouldn’t lose any voters, OK? It’s, like, incredible.”
— Donald Trump, speaking at a rally in Sioux Center, Iowa, in January. (We covered some of Trump’s many other bizarre quotes and tweets in this recent story.) Trump never actually shot anyone, but he did make many remarks that would have ruined other presidential candidates. Yet he is the next U.S. president. Such was the year in politics.