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Donald Trump Inspires Austria Tycoon Richard Lugner's Presidential Run

A colorful construction tycoon says he will adopt strategies from Donald Trump's campaign in his bid to become Austria's president — but will avoid the GOP frontrunner's "Wild West manners."

Multi-millionaire Richard Lugner, 83, told NBC News that he plans to put his name forward as an independent candidate in the race to lead the country — his second attempt — but will not "rant about everything and everyone like Trump."

Image: Austrian businessman Lugner and his wife Cathy address a news conference on his announcement to run for Austrian president in Vienna
Austrian businessman Richard Lugner, 83, and his wife Cathy, 26. HEINZ-PETER BADER / Reuters

He announced his campaign in a self-made video posted online that also featured his 26-year-old wife Cathy, who is a former Playboy bunny.

"Especially now, Austria needs a master builder from amongst the people," shouted Lugner during the 12-minute appeal for support.

He made repeated comparisons to U.S. politics, saying that "a president needs to be an actor and media professional," just like Ronald Reagan.

Lugner referred to his wife as the "first lady" but insisted he did not marry her just for his election campaign.

Cathy Lugner pledged that she would function as the new "young and attractive face of the modern Austria" at the side of her husband, who "has remained young and vital" and looks "younger than 60."

She ended her campaign speech in front of an Austrian and European Union flag with the English words "Yes, we can!"

Austrians will vote on April 24.

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