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Donald Trump on Australia

AAP logoAAP 5/11/2016 Belinda Tasker


Billionaire presidential hopeful Donald Trump has had limited dealings with Australia, but he is a fan of our socks, lamb, Miss Universe winner Jennifer Hawkins and champion golfer Adam Scott.

* Going up

Back in 2004, Donald Trump starred in a TV ad for locally-made Holeproof Computer Socks, collecting $250,000 for his efforts. Filmed aboard his private jet, Trump complains on the phone to his stock broker about falling share prices and wants something that's going up. An Aussie bloke next to him recommends Holeproof Computer Socks, prompting Trump to tell his broker: "Go out and get some Holeproof Computer stocks. They never go down." Trump was keen for brand exposure in Australia as he wanted to build a golf course here.

* Beauty queen

Newcastle model Jennifer Hawkins dazzled him that same year when crowned Miss Universe, the renowned beauty pageant Trump co-owned. "Jennifer is the most beautiful Miss Universe I have seen in many, many years," he said. Hawkins appeared to leave a long-lasting impression, with Trump confiding in 2009 that she was "one of my all-time favourite Miss Universes".

* Trade advice

During his brief visit to Sydney and Melbourne in 2011 for a National Achievers Congress, Trump tweeted: "Australia is a beautiful country with terrific people who love America." And his advice? Australia should "screw" China by raising its commodity prices. "One of the reasons I love Australia is because you're selling them all sorts of s***," he said. He also praised "your financial genius", referring to then treasurer Wayne Swan's selection as world finance minister of the year.

* Golfing great

The Republican hopeful also became a big fan of golfer Adam Scott after the Australian's nail-biting one-shot victory at the billionaire's Blue Monster course in Florida in March. Trump described Scott during a campaign speech as the "handsome kid from Australia, one of the greatest golfers in the world".

* Fire up the barbie

In 2010 Trump backed a campaign led by former Aussie Rules player Sam Kekovich urging citizens of the world to unite and enjoy a lamb barbie on Australia Day. "I think it's a great idea. I would hire you so fast. With you by my side, we could change the world," Trump told Kekovich.

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