As a White House candidate, he took the bombast to new levels, taking on not just other politicians, but the media and anyone else who dared criticize him.
Here’s a look at 35 of Trump’s memorable feuds in 2015.
1. Jeb Bush
No one has suffered more from fighting Trump that Bush, the former Florida governor who, before Trump’s entry, was generally considered the GOP front-runner.
Trump memorably cast Bush as “low energy” and mocked his lagging poll numbers, saying he was inching farther from the center of the debate stages.
Bush and his allies have coalesced recently around slamming Trump as the “chaos candidate” in advertisements after the latest debate earlier this month.
2. Bill and Hillary Clinton
Trump had long been friendly with the Clintons, who were guests at his wedding. But he turned on Hillary after launching his presidential bid. Trump said the former secretary of State “caused so many deaths” during her tenure and called her recent mid-debate bathroom break “disgusting” while accusing her of playing
the “women’s card.”
Trump also said Hillary should be held accountable for Bill Clinton’s extramarital affairs. Clinton and her campaign has routinely called out Trump’s “penchant for sexism .”
If Trump and Hillary Clinton win their parties’ presidential nominations, this feud will go on for most of 2016.
3. John McCain
Trump shocked many in July when he mocked McCain’s military service. The Arizona senator was tortured and beaten over six years of imprisonment during the Vietnam War. Trump said “I like people that weren’t captured” and set off a firestorm of condemnation. McCain, who endorsed Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) for president, has frequently criticized Trump’s comments on immigration and Muslims .
Trump’s feuds aren’t just with people. They can be with entire countries.
The business mogul announced his White House campaign in June with incendiary remarks describing immigrants from Mexico as rapists and other criminals. He has repeatedly accused Mexico of importing drugs and crime into the U.S., and has said as president he would build a wall on the U.S. southern border and make Mexico pay for it.
Mexico’s government in August said that it wouldn’t help pay for such a wall and
denounced Trump’s immigration plan as racist. Trump called for a boycott of Mexican products after the July escape of drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán. A Trump-shaped piñata later popped up in Mexico.
5. Megyn Kelly
Irritated by Kelly’s tough questions at the first GOP presidential debate, Trump said Kelly had “blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever.” The
comments angered many of Kelly’s colleagues and led to charges of sexism against Trump.
After a brief détente, Trump again threw barbs at Kelly, including this month when he accused her of being “very bad at math” after she misstated his polling lead. The network attributed the mistake to a script error.
All eyes will be on the two when Kelly returns as a moderator for the Jan. 28 GOP debate hosted by Fox.
6. Fox News
Trump’s Fox fight this year wasn’t just with Kelly, but with the news network itself. Chairman Roger Ailes at times joined in pushing back against Trump’s “unprovoked,” “unacceptable” and “disturbing” attacks on Kelly, including his retweets of followers calling her a “bimbo” in August that drew the ire of other Fox personalities.
Trump placed a moratorium on Fox interviews the following month, claiming unfair treatment, before appearing on the network a week later.
7. Univision and Jorge Ramos
Trump has sparred with Univision and its lead anchor, Jorge Ramos, since the outset of his campaign. The Spanish-language network pulled out of broadcasting Trump’s Miss Universe pageants after his controversial claims about Mexican immigrants. Trump claimed Univision caved to pressure from the Mexican government and banned Univision employees from the Trump National Doral hotel in Miami.
Trump also had Ramos, a well-respected journalist, removed from an August press conference when he rose to ask Trump a question. Ramos called Trump’s comments about immigrants “extreme,” and Trump banned Univision reporters from covering a Miami event, a tactic that he has used with other media organizations.
8. Rick Perry
The former Texas governor compared Trump to a cancer within conservatism, saying he offers “a toxic mix of demagoguery and nonsense.” During the intense back-and-forth in July, Trump suggested that Perry be forced to take an IQ test before the first GOP debate the following month. Trump got the last laugh. Perry dropped out of the race before the second debate in September, and Trump has repeatedly used him as an example of what happens to those who tangle with him.
9. Ronda Rousey
Trump took a shot at Rousey, a backer of Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, after the UFC fighter’s stunning loss last month, saying he was “glad” to see her lose and describing her a “not a nice person.” Trump went on the attack after Rousey said she wouldn’t vote for him . Conor McGregor, another UFC fighter, later ripped into Trump, saying , “Donald can shut his big, fat mouth.”
10. The New Hampshire Union-Leader
Trump has battled New Hampshire’s biggest newspaper since Dec. 27, when the Union-Leader ran a front-page op-ed calling Trump “a crude blowhard with no clear political philosophy and no deeper understanding of the important and serious role of president of the United States.” Trump responded by calling the paper’s publisher “a real low-life” desperate to sell the “dying,” “loser” paper.
11. Charles Krauthammer
Trump and the conservative columnist have exchanged barbs on several occasions, starting shortly before Trump launched his campaign and labeled Krauthammer a “dummy” and an “overrated clown” for suggesting Trump “deserved” the results of a poll at the time showing him as the most disliked candidate. Krauthammer also questioned why Trump was so easy to anger after the first debate.
12. Chuck Todd
Trump has had mixed praise and criticism for the “Meet the Press” anchor, whom he often calls “sleepy eyes.” While he called Todd “very fair” in July, Trump has also repeatedly called him dishonest.
13. Rand Paul
Trump has repeatedly suggested that the “lightweight” and “shrill” Kentucky senator doesn’t belong on the debate stage and isn’t representing his constituents. Like some other candidates, Paul has alternated between going after Trump and keeping his distance, gaining some traction in August when panning the billionaire as a “fake conservative” who Paul argued has supported liberal positions.
After Trump’s comments about Mexican immigrants, the national retailer announced it would phase out his namesake line of menswear. Macy’s called the “disparaging statements … inconsistent with [our] values,” and Trump claimed the retailer supported illegal immigration and that his “principles are far more important and therefore much more valuable.” He also called for a boycott of Macy’s stores.
The alternating love-hate relationship with CNN regularly features Trump slamming the network, which often broadcasts his rallies live. Trump earlier this month swiped at CNN moderators who handled the latest GOP debate, calling them unprofessional. He has previously gone after individual reporters by name while
suggesting the network executives were trying to influence coverage of the businessman. Trump floated not appearing in the debate unless CNN coughed up $5 million, which it refused.
16. Carly Fiorina
The only woman in the GOP presidential field garnered raucous applause in the second debate in September for responding to a remark from Trump mocking her “face” in a magazine story — he later said he was describing her “persona” — by saying that “women all over this country heard very clearly what Mr. Trump said.” Trump hit back by calling Fiorina a “robot” who dishes up “pitter-patter,” echoing a line of attack by others who argued the former Hewlett-Packard CEO has a penchant for defaulting to her stump speech.
17. Lindsey Graham
The South Carolina senator “doesn’t seem like a very bright guy,” Trump told an audience in Graham’s home state while giving out the lawmaker’s phone number during the televised speech.
That incident, which Graham played off by starring in a viral video smashing mobile devices , came after Graham called Trump a “jackass” for questioning McCain’s war record.
Graham called for Republicans to tell Trump to “go to hell” earlier this month before dropping out of the presidential race.
18. Rosie O’Donnell
Trump slammed the former host of “The View” during the August GOP debate when confronted about his past remarks describing women as pigs, dogs and slobs. “Only Rosie O’Donnell,” Trump responded, to laughs. O’Donnell tweeted later, “try explaining that 2 ur kids.” The pair have famously feuded over the years, and the comedian recently described Trump’s presidential campaign as “a nightmare.”
Trump maintains he has popularity among many minorities despite backlash from groups he has targeted. For example, he recently said he has an “excellent” relationship with the Muslim community despite his call earlier this month to temporarily ban Muslims from entering the U.S.
Trump said that while his Muslim friends may not support that proposal, they did want him to speak out against Islamic fundamentalism.
“I have many friends that are Muslims, and I will tell you, they are so happy that I did this because they know they have a problem,” Trump told CNN.
20. Time magazine
Trump ripped Time after placing third in its annual Person of the Year list, behind German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Trump had predicted there was “no way” the magazine’s editors could bring themselves to give him the top spot. After Trump lashed out, the magazine released a blooper reel of Trump evading a bald eagle during a photo shoot.
21. Bobby Jindal
The Louisiana governor called Trump an “egomaniac” who is “weak,” “insecure” and “dangerous” during a sprawling speech at the National Press Club in September. Trump mostly shrugged off the attacks, retorting that Jindal’s poll numbers were too low for him to hit back. Jindal dropped out of the GOP presidential race in December.
22. Scott Walker
Trump questioned the Wisconsin governor’s economic record and claimed Walker wasn’t “presidential material.” Walker fired back that Americans didn’t “need another apprentice” in the White House, a reference to Trump’s long-running reality TV series. The attack didn’t help Walker, who was an early casualty in the GOP race. After he dropped out, he urged Republicans to unite behind an anti-Trump candidate.
23. José Andrés
The celebrity chef and restaurateur backed out of a restaurant deal with Trump slated for his hotel remodel of the Old Post Office Pavilion in Washington, D.C., over the summer following the real estate tycoon’s disparaging remarks about immigrants. Trump retaliated, filing a $10 million lawsuit claiming breach of contract. Andrés, a native of Spain who moved to the U.S. in 1990 and received his citizenship in 2013, filed an $8 million countersuit in October.
24. The New York Times and Serge Kovaleski
Trump came under fire for mocking the appearance of Serge Kovaleski, a New York Times reporter with a physical disability. Trump used an article Kovaleski wrote for The Washington Post shortly after 9/11 to back up his assertions that Arab-Americans were “dancing in the street” after the terrorist attacks. Kovaleski disputed the claim, which prompted Trump’s unflattering imitation.
25. Republican National Committee
Trump’s rapid rise, immense support and political invulnerability has shocked GOP leaders who have worried that an independent run by the billionaire businessman would kneecap the eventual Republican nominee. Trump has repeatedly warned he’d jump ship if the Republican National Committee treats him unfairly despite
signing a loyalty pledge this summer. He reiterated in the latest presidential debate that he is committed to the party.
26. The Washington Post
Jeff Bezos, the billionaire owner of the newspaper who also owns Amazon, recently floated sending Trump into outer space after the Republican presidential candidate accused Bezos of owning the newspaper in an effort to lower his tax burden. Trump also panned the Post, saying it was losing money. The newspaper went after the GOP front-runner in a November editorial that described him as a narcissistic bully.
27. The Huffington Post
Editors decided in July to put stories about Trump in the website’s entertainment section as opposed to among its political coverage. Trump hit back, calling the website “a glorified blog.” The website relented earlier this month, with editor Arianna Huffington penning a blog post during furor over Trump’s plan to ban Muslims from entering the United States where she stated for readers, “we are no longer entertained.”
Trump has railed against Politico on Twitter since 2012 and ramped up his attacks during his campaign. He has constantly insisted the outlet is bleeding money, lacking clout and misleading readers, though he will occasionally retweet a story citing a positive poll for his campaign.
29. The Des Moines Register
Shortly before a December Des Moines Register poll showed GOP presidential rival Ted Cruz besting Trump in Iowa, the real estate mogul trashed the newspaper in its hometown. Trump called the paper “dishonest” and “the worst,” and claimed it didn’t conduct polls properly. After the poll’s release, Trump called it “ biased” and
complained that reporters ignored a CNN poll in which Trump led Cruz.
30. The Wall Street Journal
Trump slammed the newspaper and its conservative-leaning editorial board in November for criticizing his take on the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Trump said on Fox News that the “third-rate” paper isn’t “respected too much anymore ,” and fired off a string of critical tweets.
NBC cut ties with the host of “The Apprentice” after his comments on Mexican immigrants. The network declined to carry his Miss America and Miss Universe pageants. Trump said afterward that NBC “will stand behind lying Brian Williams,” the former “NBC Nightly News” anchor, “but won’t stand behind people that tell it like it is, as unpleasant as that may be.”
32. John Kasich
The Ohio governor and his presidential campaign have linked Trump to Russian President Vladimir Putin and Nazi Germany, called him a hypocrite and questioned if he’s worthy of the presidency . Trump fired back by calling Kasich “one of the worst presidential candidates in history” and a “dummy.”
33. George Will
Trump called for the conservative political pundit to be “thrown off” Fox News last month, saying the columnist is “wrong almost all of the time” and is “boring and totally biased.” That came after Will penned a column urging readers to take another look at Chris Christie’s presidential bid in the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks and “to relegate Trump’s rampaging to the nation’s mental attic.”
34. Bill Kristol
The editor of the conservative Weekly Standard magazine predicted this week that Trump’s “mystique” would shatter if he doesn’t win the Iowa caucuses, leading to his imminent demise in the Republican primary. Trump responded by saying Kristol has “lost all self-respect” and “is too embarrassed to walk down the street.”
35. The White House
White House press secretary Josh Earnest raised some eyebrows earlier this month when, during an extended diatribe against Trump’s proposal to ban Muslims from entering the U.S., he mocked Trump’s “fake hair.” Trump fired back, saying it was
“disgusting” for the president’s top spokesman to make such a comment.
Trump has sparred for months with President Obama and the White House, with Earnest this month also taking a dig at Trump’s glowing medical report that said if elected he would become the healthiest president ever and Trump taking issue with Obama’s quip about seeing the new Star Wars movie.