Donald Trump dismantled one teleprompter and knocked the other over when they failed to work at a Friday rally in Charlotte, North Carolina, ABC News is reporting.
The Republican presidential nominee had revealed that the restraints were off his campaign after House Speaker Paul Ryan said he would not campaign for the Manhattan businessman early this week.
Trump in a bid to launch a more disciplined presidential onslaught for the White House had then decided to use teleprompters to get his message across to his fiery supporters only to have it flounder and make him return to his unpredictable style.
The 70-year-old dismantled the teleprompters after they stopped working, adding that he preferred to talk without the display screens whizzing in front of him.
“These teleprompters haven’t been working for the last 20 minutes and I actually like my speech better without the teleprompters…I notice every time I look up, they’re trying, it’s trying…it’s straining…get this thing out of here.”
Trump told his supporters that he would not pay a dime to the company that provided the defective machines, adding that it would end up in the media the following day with outlets accusing him of not paying a hard-working contractor.
“So the teleprompter is a bummer, it doesn’t work…that means the company didn’t do a good job. So I won’t pay them…and tomorrow I’ll have a story in the newspaper, ‘Donald Trump did not pay a contractor who put up the teleprompters.'”
Over the months, Trump’s advisers had tried to get the businessman to use the devices at campaign rallies to deliver on-topic messages and avoid his freewheeling speeches that were neither here nor there.
They had insisted that he was making it difficult to come out tops during the election if he continued to speak from the gut. On Friday, Donald Trump had tried to do just that, unfortunately the teleprompters broke down mid-way into his North Carolina rally.
The 70-year-old said he would address the rally without any script, after all he had gone through 17 professional politicians without using one. He took a jab at his Democratic Party rival Hillary Clinton, saying that she just read words off a screen and went to bed. His campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway laughed off the incident, saying it marked the end of the devices for the Republican presidential candidate.
This is not the first time that the American tycoon will be having a run-in with teleprompters. During the Republican Party primaries, Trump ridiculed his rivals for using the tool, but he later embraced it.
His first attempt to use it came at a pro-Israel gathering in March which took place in Washington. According to Aileen Pincus, a public speaking consultant and coach, it turned out to be disaster because Trump was shouting, gesticulating wildly and squinting at the display screen.
She said Donald Trump struggled with the device and failed to make regular eye contact with the audience he was addressing. Pincus said Trump’s problem with the machines were common with users who were just starting off with them, but added it was unusual for a man trying to be president to be struggling with them publicly.
At an August Republican Party convention in Cleveland, Trump was again accused of squinting and looking confused as he delivered a speech about terrorism. Experts say again he made it obvious he was reading off a screen, punctuated the speech with awkward pauses and trailed off sentences.
On occasions, Trump has misread words to devastating effect, including one time when lambasting Democratic nominee Hilary Clinton. He said she had created a personal email server “deliberately, willfully and with pre-medication,” he later corrected the error by saying, “premeditation.”
When asked in a radio interview why he did not adopt the type of tone he used in Mexico with President Enrique Peña Nieto by using teleprompters, Trump revealed it would make his speeches boring and turn off his audiences.
“If I used the tone I used in Mexico, I think everybody would’ve fallen asleep.”
[Featured Image by John Michillo/AP Images]