Updated at 11:24 a.m. on November 18.
Come November 2012, Donald Trump may seek to give President Obama a rather brief message: "You're fired."
The real estate magnate and host of NBC's The Apprentice said on ABC's Good Morning America today that he is considering making a run for the White House as a Republican. Trump, who formed an exploratory committee in 1999 but never ran, said he is motivated by America's diminished standing on the world stage.
“I am thinking about things. And I'm looking at this country, George, and what's happened in terms of respect. And the respect for this country is just not there,” he said in an interview with GMA co-anchor George Stephanopoulos. “I have many people from China that I do business with, they laugh at us. They feel we're fools. And almost being led by fools. And they can't believe what they're getting away with.... We cannot let the rest of the world beat us up. We're like a whipping post right now."
Trump said he would put America back on course by taxing China in response to the nation's currency manipulation. He brushed aside concerns raised by Stephanopoulos about how viable that strategy might be given Chinese leverage as a major buyer of U.S. debt.
“I don't think the bankers have the cards," he said. "I think you have the cards. And in this case, in -- in the case of China, you literally are taxing China, you'll pay off your debt very quickly."
The billionaire also said he would spend "a lot" of his fortune on the race if he decided to run.
This morning's interview follows the appearance of a mysterious poll earlier this fall that gauged Trump's as a candidate in the key primary state of New Hampshire. Trump denied any involvement at the time.