- One voter took President Donald Trump by surprise with a compliment on his appearance during an NBC News town hall Thursday evening.
- “I have to say, you have a great smile,” said Paulette Dale, a Florida voter. “You’re so handsome when you smile.”
- She then asked Trump an immigration-related question before the event came to a close.
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President Donald Trump was fielding questions from voters during a town hall on Thursday night for nearly an hour when one caught him off guard with a compliment.
“I have to say, you have a great smile,” said Paulette Dale, who NBC News host Savannah Guthrie introduced as a 2016 Hillary Clinton voter, now leaning toward choosing former Vice President Joe Biden this election but registered as a Republican.
“Thank you,” Trump replied while flashing a wide grin, met with applause from the audience.
“He does,” Dale continued. “You’re so handsome when you smile.”
Dale then asked the president an immigration-related question, shortly before the event in Miami came to a close.
“Surveys show that most Americans and the majority of Republicans support the Dreamers program,” she said, referring to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals federal policy, otherwise known as DACA, implemented under the Obama administration that temporarily protects young immigrants from deportation.
“If you are elected to a second term, do you expect to pursue your previous efforts to cut the DACA program?” she questioned.
“We are going to take care of DACA, we’re going to take care of Dreamer. It’s working right now. We’re negotiating different aspects of immigration and immigration law,” the president responded. “We’re working very hard on the DACA program. And you will be, I think, very happy over the course of the next year because I feel the same as you do about it.”
Guthrie then challenged Trump on his claims and pointed out his administration’s efforts to curb the policy. This summer, the Department of Homeland Security announced it will reject any new applicants to the program and limit deportation protections for current enrollees to one year, instead of the usual two years.
Trump stated the move was made as a result of the pandemic. “Much changed on the immigration front,” he said. “Mexico is heavily infected, as you know, and we’ve made it very, very difficult to come in because of the pandemic.”
Yet, in fact, the decision was a direct response to the Supreme Court 5-4 ruling that upheld the law, which acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf made clear in his announcement at the time.
The exchange wrapped up an evening of tense moments between Trump and Guthrie over his recent tweets linked to QAnon conspiracy theories, his handling of the coronavirus outbreak, his tax returns, among other topics.
The town hall came in place of a second presidential debate versus Biden, who participated in a separate town hall on Thursday night. The two are scheduled to publicly face-off on the same stage again on October 22.
—NBC Politics (@NBCPolitics) October 16, 2020
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