Republican strategist Karl Rove says he has a hard time imagining Donald Trump actually going through with his presidential bid and submitting filings that would reveal details about his finances.
“This guy is not a serious candidate,” Rove said on Fox News Sunday. “As of Friday at 5:00, he had yet to file the one-page declaration of his candidacy with the FEC [Federal Election Commission]. The reason he's not is because once he does that, that triggers a 30-day period during which he has to lay out in excruciating detail the range of his liabilities and his assets. He gets to have two 45-day extensions. He will delay filing that piece of paper, and mark my words, he will delay and ask for extensions as long as possible.”
Trump announced his candidacy Tuesday after flirting with the idea for several election cycles. At his announcement, he gave a long, seemingly off-the-cuff speech that included talk of his plan to defeat the Islamic State, though he did not reveal what that plan is.
“Ignore him. Look, he's completely off the base. 'I'm going to negotiate with ISIS'? 'I have a secret plan to deal with ISIS but I can't tell you about it because of my enemies'?” said Rove, a former adviser to President George W. Bush.
“We ought to treat him as a serious candidate when he finally files that declaration and commits himself to unveiling all of his assets and liabilities,” Rove said.
Trump's campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, said Trump has 15 days after announcing to file his initial declaration of candidacy, which would then trigger the 30-day period in which to file his personal financial disclosure statement or ask for the first of two possible 45-day extensions. Lewandowski said Trump would not seek an extension.
“When Mr. Trump files his declaration of candidacy and his personal financial disclosure statement, we look forward to the public acknowledgement from Karl Rove that he is once again wrong about presidential politics,” Lewandowski said.