News Column

Trump in the Oval Office: Mixed Reviews From Business

May 13, 2011

Ashley Smith

Donald Trump
Donald Trump

One thing's for sure, The Donald has a larger-than-life personality.

The business folks who listened to him speak in Nashua on Wednesday afternoon seemed to agree that Trump is skilled at working an audience.

But reviews were mixed on whether that gusto would translate well to the Oval Office.

Bobby LaMattina, owner of Tokyo Joe's Studios of Self-Defense in Nashua, said he's a fan of Trump personally, but doesn't consider him a credible candidate.

"In my honest opinion, he's just trying to get publicity. Nobody's going to beat Obama, especially with the accomplishment he just did -- killing bin Laden."

But Richard Jean, owner of Central Realty in Nashua, said he would vote for Trump.

"I would vote for him because of his business background," he said. "I think he's straightforward and aggressive, and that's what this country needs."

Jean said he's not dissuaded by the fact that not all of Trump's business ventures have been successful. Four companies owned by the business mogul have gone into bankruptcy since 1991.

"I think it's a normal part of business," he said.

Tom Wilhelmsen, CEO of Southern New Hampshire Medical Center in Nashua, said he just started looking into Trump's credentials. "His personality is so large that sometimes it overshadows what he's accomplished ... but he is a successful businessman."

Wilhelmsen, who has met Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich, and once lunched with Dan Quayle, said he's not yet ready to make a decision on whether he'll support Trump. In a state where there are so many opportunities to interact with presidential candidates, it's too early to pick one, he said.

Tony Martinez, sales manager at G.M. Roth in Nashua, a kitchen and bath remodeling company, said he agreed with most of what Trump had to say. "He's right about the country being deeply in debt," he said.

But will Donald actually run? Probably not, said Martinez.

"I think he's a smart man and a smart businessman. I think he's probably too smart to be president."

David Holliday, who handles sales and marketing for Nashua's Winco Identification, said he didn't hear too many new ideas in Trump's speech.

But the idea of Trump as president is interesting, he said.

"Life would certainly be entertaining for four years," Holliday said.

Source: Copyright (c) 2011, The Telegraph, Nashua, N.H.

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