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10 of Donald Trump's most outlandish quotes on key issues

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at the Treasure Island Hotel & Casino on October 8, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
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Whatever you think about real estate mogul and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, one thing's for sure: The man knows how to say things that get attention. Indeed, as far back as his 1987 book "The Art of the Deal," he showed that he's always understood the nature of the press and used it to his advantage.

"Most reporters, I find, have very little interest in exploring the substance of a detailed proposal for a development," he said. "They look instead for the sensational angle."

On Monday, Trump had his first debate with Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

For better or worse, the man knows how to say things that keep the spotlight on him. The topics about which he has been known to freely opine include business, the economy, climate change and what an entrepreneur needs to do in order to allow business creation to run riot.

Whatever you think of him, there's no denying that he has a unique perspective on what it takes to run a successful business. CNBC.com presents 10 colorful quotes on key topics entrepreneurs are concerned about.

Bankruptcy

Billionaire real estate developer Donald J. Trump, right, and his daughter Ivanka Trump leave U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Camden, New Jersey, U.S., on Thursday, Feb. 25, 2010.
Bradley C. Bower | Bloomberg | Getty Images

According to CNN, Trump filed for business bankruptcy four times. While the layman sees bankruptcy as something to steadfastly avoid, Trump said in the first Republican debate in August 2015 that bankruptcy laws are simply another tool at the disposal of the entrepreneur.

"I have used the laws of this country — just like the greatest people that you read about every day in business have used the laws of this country, the chapter laws, to do a great job for my company, for myself, for my employees, for my family, et cetera," he said. "Virtually every person that you read about on the front page of the business sections, they've used the law."


'Truthful hyperbole'

Donald Trump
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Are you an entrepreneur seeking free publicity? If so, take note. In Trump's 1987 book "The Art of the Deal," the then 41-year-old real estate mogul discussed his methods for publicizing his brand. Anyone who's noticed his affinity for superlatives will see that almost 30 years later, little has changed.

"A little hyperbole never hurts," he said. "People want to believe that something is the biggest and the greatest and the most spectacular. … I call it truthful hyperbole. It's an innocent form of exaggeration — and a very effective form of promotion."


The environment

A woman wearing a protective mask makes her way on an extremely polluted day as hazardous, choking smog continues to blanket Beijing, China December 1, 2015.
Kim Kyung-Hoon | Reuters

Climate change is a hot-button topic. Scientists have warned for decades that it will do irreversible damage to the Earth, and skeptics have declared it a hoax. In November 2012, Trump took to Twitter and put himself in the latter category, characterizing climate change as a con devised by malicious foreign actors to stymie the American manufacturing sector.

"The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive," he said.



The great negotiator

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump holds up his book 'The Art of the Deal'.
Eric Schultz | AP

Trump has frequently cited his skills as a negotiator as the primary asset setting him apart from career politicians. At the December presidential forum of the Republican Jewish Coalition, the candidate attempted to ingratiate himself to the audience by touting both this skill set and his knowledge of Judaism.

"I'm a negotiator, like you folks," he said. "Is there anybody that doesn't renegotiate deals in this room? This room negotiates them — perhaps more than any other room I've ever spoken in."

The glass ceiling

Moderators Chris Wallace (L) pats on the shoulder of Megyn Kelly (2nd L) as they wait with Bret Baier (R) for the beginning of the Fox News - Google GOP Debate January 28, 2016 at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines, Iowa.
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Trump is frequently characterized as being demeaning toward women. In June, he spoke to Fox News' Bill O'Reilly to set the record straight and characterize himself as a champion of women's rights.

"I have great respect for women," he said. "I was the one that really broke the glass ceiling on behalf of women, more than anybody in the construction industry."

Minority outreach

Delegates wave signs, including a 'Latinos for Trump' sign, at the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio on Thursday July 21, 2016.
Bill Clark | CQ Roll Call | Getty Images

According to Fox News Latino, the Hillary Clinton campaign team is engaged in aggressive outreach to Latino voters. The team has joined forces with an allied super PAC and spent $23 million on advertising since June in areas that are home to much of Florida's Puerto Rican community.

Trump's team, meanwhile, has spent only $5 million in this area. But if his comments in July are any indication, he believes that wooing the Latino vote requires a different approach entirely.

"I'll take jobs back from China; I'll take jobs back from Japan," he said. "The Hispanics are going to get those jobs, and they're going to love Trump."


Regulation asphyxiation

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at the American Airlines Center on September 14, 2015 in Dallas, Texas.
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At a March rally in Dallas, Trump sounded off on the mounting regulations that he felt are hobbling businesses. But he didn't stop at simply characterizing them as burdensome albatrosses that hold back innovation and competition; he characterized them in apocalyptic terms, a hazard to the very life and limb of the entrepreneur.

"We're going to get rid of the regulations that are just destroying us," he said. "You can't breathe. You cannot breathe."


The people of Mexico

A man walks past a mural depicting US presidential candidate Donald Trump on the US-Mexico border fence at the Libertad neighborhood in Tijuana, northwestern Mexico on April 19, 2016.
Jose Rivera | AFP | Getty Images

Trump has made illegal immigration a central issue. In fact, during his June 16, 2015, announcement that he was running for president, he characterized Mexican immigrants as "rapists" who are bringing drugs and crime into the United States. He elaborated further on these sentiments at a July 2015 rally in Phoenix.

"I love the Mexican people. … I respect Mexico," he said at first, before shifting gears. "They're taking our jobs. They're taking our manufacturing jobs. They're taking our money. They're killing us."


Working mothers

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump holds babies at a campaign rally in Colorado Springs, Colorado, U.S., July 29, 2016.
Carlo Allegri | Reuters

In a 2004 interview with NBC's "Dateline," Trump was asked his opinion about pregnant employees. He revealed an attitude that one could describe as unsentimental at best and ruthless at worst.

"[Pregnancy is] a wonderful thing for the woman, it's a wonderful thing for the husband, it's certainly an inconvenience for a business," he said. "And whether people want to say that or not, the fact is, it is an inconvenience for a person that is running a business."


Arm candy

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump gestures to his wife Melania after she delivered a speech on the first day of the Republican National Convention on July 18, 2016 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.
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Trump has been brutally savaged by the press on an ongoing basis for the last three decades. However, as a student of the "there's no such thing as bad publicity" school of entrepreneurialism, this has kept his name in the spotlight and served his ends.

He told Esquire magazine in a 1991 interview that getting bad press is no obstacle to the successful businessman, provided he meets certain criteria in other areas.

"You know, it doesn't really matter what they write as long as you've got a young and beautiful piece of a--," he said.


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