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This Man Says He Put Trump on Road to White House

Mike Dunbar, of Portsmouth, started a "Draft Trump for President" in 1987

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    A New Hampshire man believes he may have given Donald Trump the idea to run for president nearly three decades ago. (Published Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2017)

    A New Hampshire man believes he may have given Donald Trump the idea to run for president nearly three decades ago.

    In 1987, Mike Dunbar, of Portsmouth, started a "Draft Trump for President" movement and arranged for the then-41-year-old businessman to speak at his Rotary luncheon.

    "I saw in 1987 a man of action, a man who gets things done," Dunbar said. "I planted a seed and that seed grew and it's now become a tree and it's borne fruit."

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    Trump arrived that October day by helicopter and delivered his speech to the rotary club. Dunbar said it was very similar to Trump's inauguration address.

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    "I believed he had what it took. He does have what it takes. He's now President Trump," Dunbar said.

    Dunbar, a chair maker by trade, went on to win a city council seat himself. But he says his biggest political win is giving Trump a start.

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    "History pivoted, history turned and I was there and I created the pivot around which it turned," he said.

    Trump gave Dunbar a signed book, and they exchanged letters for several years — in one, Trump said he hadn't forgotten Dunbar's friendship.

    Now retired, he said he plans to write a book on the experience with Trump in 1987.

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