Behind the scenes at MSNBC's exclusive town hall with Donald Trump

  • Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski moderate a Town Hall with Donald Trump in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Morning Joe hosts Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough  during the MSNBC Town Hall with Donald Trump in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump during the MSNBC Town Hall moderated by Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump with Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski at the MSNBC Town Hall in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump during the MSNBC Town Hall with Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski moderate a Town Hall with Donald Trump in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump during the MSNBC Town Hall in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski  with Donald Trump during the MSNBC Town Hall in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Behind the scenes at the MSNBC Town Hall with Donald Trump moderated by Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski during the MSNBC Town Hall with Donald Trump in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Donald Trump addresses questions during the MSNBC Town Hall moderated by Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski in Charleston, S.C. on Feb. 17, 2016.
  • Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump during the MSNBC Town Hall moderated by Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Donald Trump takes questions from the audience during the MSNBC Town Hall moderated by Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Donald Trump addresses the audience during the MSNBC Town Hall moderated by Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough listens to Donald Trump during the MSNBC Town Hall with in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump during the MSNBC Town Hall moderated by Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski listen to Donald Trump during the MSNBC Town Hall in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough address the audience during the MSNBCTown Hall with Donald Trump in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump during the MSNBC Town Hall moderated by Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Members of the audience ask Republican frontrunner Donald Trump questions during a Town Hall hosted by Morning Joe's Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough during the MSNBC Town Hall with Donald Trump in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Donald Trump answers questions from a young boy during the MSNBC Town Hall in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Donald Trump behind the scenes at MSNBC Town Hall moderated by Morning Joe hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough greets the audience at the MSNBC Town Hall with Donald Trump in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.
  • Donald Trump greets audience members at the MSNBC Town Hall moderated by Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski in Charleston, South Carolina on February 17, 2016.

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Consider a political outsider who is tapping into voter anger, delivering a populist message and drawing raucous thousands to rallies. He wants the hedge fund managers to pay more taxes and argues that there should be healthcare for everyone. Sound familiar? 

“You’re describing Donald Trump,” the Republican candidate confidently said during MSNBC’s exclusive town hall Wednesday night in Charleston, South Carolina. Except ”Morning Joe” co-host Mika Brzezinski had her mind on someone else.

“Actually, I was describing Bernie Sanders,” said Brzezinski, who moderated the event along with “Morning Joe” co-host Joe Scarborough. Her exchange with Trump perfectly encapsulates just how unusual 2016 is: The GOP front-runner actually has quite a lot in common with a leading candidate from the opposing party.

Photographer Mark Peterson went behind the scenes in Charleston to provide an exclusive look at MSNBC’s town hall with Trump.

Read more about the event here

These photographs were shot on assignment by photographer Mark Peterson for MSNBC Photography as part of his on-going body of work “Political Theater” which examines the landscape of the American political system.

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