Trump: Praise for Rubio’s third-place Iowa finish 'strange'

Donald TrumpDonald TrumpTrump campaign dismisses Dem attacks as ‘night of empty rhetoric’ Obama makes case for Clinton to succeed him FULL SPEECH: President Obama at the Democratic convention MORE said early Wednesday that it is “strange” political pundits are celebrating Marco RubioMarco RubioGroups unendorse Grayson after domestic violence allegations Trump postpones Hispanic roundtable Tim Kaine backs call to boost funding for Israeli missile defense MORE’s third-place showing in Iowa’s caucuses.

“I said, ‘Why are they so excited about Marco’s third place finish?’” Trump asked on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

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“I said to myself, ‘That’s strange,’” he continued. "In fact, you would have though he had won. I came in second, he came in third, and his is a tremendous victory and mine’s not.

“It’s interesting that Marco came in third place and it’s one of the great victories in the history of politics. They said, ‘No, no, his is, but yours isn’t.' And I said, ‘Oh, that’s wonderful.' I didn’t understand that.”

Trump then argued that the gap between his results and Rubio is much wider than widely acknowledged.

“People said Rubio was right next to me,” he said. "Well, he was more than 2,000 votes away. That’s a lot of votes.

“Don’t forget, in the history of Iowa, I got the most votes, other than one person, Ted [Cruz]. ...  I got a tremendous amount of votes, nobody came close.”

Trump added that he is pleased with his results in Iowa last Monday night given he has never campaigned for elected office before.

“I think we did very well,” he said. "I’m like a rookie, and I’m learning fast. Hey, look, there were many governors and senators in Iowa that would have loved to have that second-place finish.”

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