Donald Trump went on the hot seat — via telephone, anyway — during Thursday’s episode of “The View,” as Whoopi Golberg, Joy Behar and the crew grilled him on topics ranging from Planned Parenthood to immigration to his GOP rivals Carly Fiorina and Ben Carson.
The takeaway, from the Donald’s own perpetually running mouth: He loves women and will protect them, he wasn’t trashing Fiorina’s looks in that Rolling Stone interview, and Ben Carson should mind his own business about how or who Trump worships.
Trump’s telephonic face-off with the “View” crew started off with a discussion of President Obama’s proposed nuclear deal with Iran.
“I love the concept of a deal, because nuclear is nothing but trouble,” Trump allowed, but nonetheless opined,”It’s a great deal for Iran but it’s not a good deal for us — it’s a terrible deal.
“It’s going to lead to nuclear proliferation,” Trump added.
From there the conversation pivoted to women’s health issues, with Trump telling Whoopi and the gang, “Jeb Bush and to a large extent Hillary [Clinton] are not committed like I’m committed” to the issue of women’s health.
Quizzed by Raven-Symone on his history of making controversial statements about women, the GOP candidate said, “Don’t forget, to a large extent, much of what you’ve seen is [me] as an entertainer.”
That naturally led to a discussion of Trump’s recent interview with Rolling Stone, during which the former “Apprentice” honcho said of rival GOP candidate Carly Fiorina, “Look at that face! Would anyone vote for that? Can you imagine that, the face of our next president?!”
Trump countered that he wasn’t actually disparaging the former business leader’s looks.
“I’m talking about her persona,” Trump told “The View.” “She failed miserably at Hewlett-Packard, she failed at Lucent …. she then ran for the Senate, she lost in a landslide, now she’s running for president … we need somebody that’s successful.”
Trump later noted, “I cherish women and I will protect women and I will take care of women, and I have great respect for women.”
During the segment, talk moved on to GOP candidate Ben Carson, who recently attempted to distinguish himself from Trump by declaring, “I don’t deny my faith in God.”
Trump took great exception to Carson’s religion-based trash-talk.
“All of a sudden he became a man of great faith. I didn’t notice this four or five years ago,” Trump huffed. “He should not be questioning somebody else’s faith when he knows nothing about that person, because I really don’t know Ben Carson, and he certainly doesn’t know me.”
The candidate then sought to clarify his controversial statements on immigrants, denying that he’s targeting Mexican immigrants exclusively but rather illegal immigrants “from all over the world.”
“I’m saying illegal immigration is a tremendous problem in this country, and I want them out,” Trump declared. “Right now, thousands of people a week are pouring through our borders. They’re pouring through, and we can’t have that.”
Trump added that he welcomes immigrants from other countries, as long as they go through “a process.”
“People have to go through a process, and we can even expedite the process,” Trump said. “I want to have people come into the country, but they have to come in legally.”
The mostly civil back-and-forth took a turn for the heated when the topic of de-funding Planned Parenthood emerged. Trump declared that he’s against abortion, and “that is a tremendous amount of the work they do.”
Behar countered that Planned Parenthood only performs abortions for 3 percent of its clients, and that those abortions aren’t government-funded.
Trump came back with vastly different figures, asserting that anywhere from 55 to 65 percent of the Planned Parenthood money goes to abortions.
“I swear to you, Donald, you are misinformed here,” Goldberg said.
Watch the historic summit below.