Trump Tells Rally Crowd Mike Bloomberg 'Can't Debate,' Amy Klobuchar 'Choked'

President Donald Trump criticized the debate performances of former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg and Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar during a campaign speech in Colorado Springs, Colorado on Thursday night.

Trump told the raucous Colorado crowd that both Bloomberg and Klobuchar "choked" during Wednesday night's debate.

Bloomberg made his first appearance in a Democratic debate Wednesday after controversially deciding to focus his self-funded campaign on advertising. That decision caused other Democratic candidates to accuse Bloomberg of attempting to buy his way into the presidency.

Trump referred to Bloomberg by the nickname "Mini Mike" during his Colorado remarks.

"Mini Mike didn't do too well last night," Trump said. "I was going to send him a note saying, 'It's not easy doing what I do, is it?' It's not easy, Mike!"

"He went way down," Trump added. "It's all right."

Trump's comment was a reiteration of a tweet he posted early Thursday morning.

"Mini Mike Bloomberg's debate performance tonight was perhaps the worst in the history of debates, and there have been some really bad ones," Trump wrote. "He was stumbling, bumbling and grossly incompetent. If this doesn't knock him out of the race, nothing will. Not so easy to do what I did!"

Trump also accused Bloomberg of choking during the debate.

"Bloomberg made a fool out of himself last night," Trump said. "He choked! 'I can't breathe! Don't ask me the questions!'"

donald trump
President Donald Trump criticized the debate performances of two of his Democratic political rivals during a campaign speech in Colorado Thursday. David McNew/Getty

When Trump said Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders "seems to be leading" the Democratic race, the crowd booed.

"Mini Mike, I thought he might come up but he can't," Trump said, "because he can't debate. He wasn't meant for the camera, do we agree?"

Trump claimed Klobuchar signaled the "end of her campaign" by her reaction to a point made by former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg during Wednesday's debate.

Buttigieg brought up Klobuchar's inability to name Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador during a February interview with Telemundo.

"You're on the committee that oversees border security," Buttigieg told Klobuchar. "You're on the committee that does trade. You're literally part of the committee that's overseeing these things."

"Are you trying to see that I'm dumb? Are you mocking me here, Pete?" Klobuchar asked.

"I'm saying you shouldn't trivialize that knowledge," Buttigieg replied.

Klobuchar acknowledged that she made an error and said, "People sometimes forget names."

Trump seized on Klobuchar's reaction to Buttigieg's remarks, telling the crowd Klobuchar "couldn't breathe."

"How about Klobuchar?" Trump asked. "Did you see her? She choked, she couldn't breathe. Alfred E. Neuman [Trump's nickname for Buttigieg] looked at her and said something slightly derogatory and she said, 'Are you accusing me of being dumb?'"

"Who would make a statement like that?" Trump asked. "Because that's really what he was doing, but he doesn't want to say that. That was the end of her campaign in my book. You don't say that. Even if it's true, you don't say that."

Klobuchar responded to Trump's remarks with a Thursday tweet saying she took them as "a badge of honor."

"Donald Trump went after me at his rally tonight," Klobuchar wrote. "I'll take it as a badge of honor. He knows we're rising and we'll beat him in November (and a poll in the battleground state of PA today had me beating him by 7 points)!"

Trump is expected to hold his next campaign rally Friday in Las Vegas, the day before Nevada is scheduled to hold the presidential caucus.

Updated 6:49 p.m. EST 02/21/2020: This story was updated to include Senator Klobuchar's tweeted response.

Trump Tells Rally Crowd Mike Bloomberg 'Can't Debate,' Amy Klobuchar 'Choked' | U.S.