A former New Mexico governor who is seeking the Libertarian Party nomination insulted Donald Trump using a vulgar insult, one that Trump himself used last month in reference to Texas Senator Ted Cruz.
After bragging about climbing the tallest mountain on each continent, former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson said, to applause, “Donald Trump’s a pussy.”
Johnson dropped the vulgar word as one of five candidates speaking at the second part of a Libertarian Party presidential debate in Biloxi, Mississippi this past Saturday night.
His fellow Libertarian Party presidential hopeful John McAfee—the guy who developed the anti-virus program that bears his name—chimed in, “Hear, hear!”
The debate wasn’t as glamorous as the presidential debates for the Democratic or Republican parties that appear on national cable channels and broadcast networks.
When the five finalists, out of eleven candidates, came back onstage for the ‘lightning round,’ Johnson had to ask the moderators if they could turn the speakers on behind the candidates so they could actually hear the questions.
Johnson ended up “winning” the debate according to a straw poll of 117 audience members with 38 percent.
But it was on the question of why each candidate was most electable that Johnson dropped the line of the debate.
“If Donald Trump’s the nominee and Hillary’s the nominee, if that isn’t an opportunity for the Libertarian Party, I don’t know what is,” Johnson said. “And Donald? I’ve climbed the Seven Summits, the highest mountain on each continent—Donald Trump’s a pussy.”
NM Political Report reached out to Johnson’s campaign who declined to add to the comment.
“He pretty much covered it, I believe,” a spokesman said.
Johnson, of course, isn’t the first presidential candidate to publicly call one of their opponents that word in this election cycle.
Early in February, a woman shouted something at Trump that many in the audience could not hear.
Vox described what came next.
“She said — I never expect to hear that from you again!,” [Trump] told the crowd, in mock disapproval. “She said: ‘He’s a pussy.’ That’s terrible.”
This also isn’t the only time Johnson has criticized Trump.
In the summer of 2015, months before he jumped into the race, Johnson told a libertarian news source that Trump “is appealing to a segment that I’ll just label racist.”
He also criticized Trump’s insistence on building a wall on the Mexican border in that interview.
On Monday, Johnson tweeted about Trump’s failure on national TV to disavow KKK grand wizard David Duke.
Just to be clear. It would not take me 4 days to decide whether to disavow the KKK. #makeamericasaneagain #libertarian #2016election
— Gov. Gary Johnson (@GovGaryJohnson) February 29, 2016
Saturday’s Libertarian Party debate also featured an interesting exchange on Sharia law.
Johnson condemned Sharia while at the same time defending Islam.
“We are all in favor of freedom of religion. No ifs, ands or buts,” Johnson said. “We are all for Islam, alright? Freedom of religion. But we need to distinguish between freedom of religion, which is Islam, and the politics of Sharia.
“Sharia is a political system that allows people, starting with women’s right to be beaten,” he said. “Allows for gays to be hung. Allows for people to be put to death. It allows women to be put to death with honor killings.”
Austin Petersen, another candidate who was one of the final five to make it to the second part of the debate, criticized Johnson’s “fear-mongering” and said that Sharia includes some libertarian principles, such as private courts.
Johnson shot back asking if Petersen supported Sharia law; the younger Libertarian said that no, he did not support Sharia Law.
Full second half of the debate
He said he would have been elected president “if people would have just heard what I had to say.”
On most issues, the candidates agreed. They agreed that the War on Drugs was a bad idea. They agreed that building a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border was not a good idea and that the immigration system needed to be fixed. They also agreed that both the Democratic and Republican parties were, well, bad.
Andy Lyman contributed to this story.